NFL Analysis


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2023 NFL Draft Do-Over: How Far Does Bryce Young Fall?

Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud, Anthony Richardson

We are more than midway through the 2023 NFL season, and it’s not hard to see which teams crushed last year’s draft and which ones are left wanting more.

But what if the entire rookie class was thrown back into a pool and every franchise got a chance to re-do its first-round pick? How different might the first round look after 12 weeks of the NFL season?

Here is our 2023 NFL Re-Draft going into Week 13.

2023 NFL Re-Draft

1. Carolina Panthers – C.J. Stroud, QB, Ohio State

Original Pick: Bryce Young, QB, Alabama

For a few weeks, C.J. Stroud was the odds-on favorite to be the No. 1 pick once the Carolina Panthers traded up to the top spot. But Carolina decided to go in a different direction, selecting Bryce Young. That looks like a massive mistake in hindsight because Stroud is already playing like a franchise quarterback. In fact, he might already be a top-10 quarterback in the NFL.

2. Houston Texans – Will Anderson, EDGE, Alabama

Original Pick: Anderson

With Stroud off the board, the Houston Texans take the player they moved up for at No. 3. Anderson has only three sacks this season, but he is already one of the best young edge rushers in the league. It won’t be long before Will Anderson posts double-digit sack seasons in Houston.

3. Houston Texans – Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida

Original Pick: C.J. Stroud, QB, Houston

After grabbing Anderson at No. 2, the Texans swing for the fences at quarterback with Anthony Richardson. He has only played a few games this season but showed enough to warrant a top-five selection. This is one of the riskier picks in the entire draft because of his health, but Richardson’s upside is ridiculous, and he could be a star in the right offense.

4. Indianapolis Colts – Jalen Carter, DT, Georgia

Original Pick: Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida

Jalen Carter fell in the 2023 NFL Draft for off-the-field reasons, but his play on the field has been fantastic. You can make a case that he’s been the best interior defensive lineman in the NFL this year. Pairing him with DeForest Buckner would give the Indianapolis Colts one of the best defensive tackle pairings in the league.

5. Seattle Seahawks – Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois

Original Pick: Witherspoon

Devon Witherspoon has been fantastic for the Seattle Seahawks and gives the defense swagger and attitude. He’s been one of the top cornerbacks in the league this season, and you can make a case that he might even go higher than this in a re-draft.

6. Arizona Cardinals – Paris Johnson, OT, Ohio State

Original Pick: Johnson

The Arizona Cardinals are trying to build their trenches, and Paris Johnson's selection at No. 6 was — and still is — a good pick. He's had an up-and-down rookie season, but all of the signs are there for him to be an elite tackle in the NFL.

7. Las Vegas Raiders – Bryce Young, QB, Alabama

Original Pick: Tyree Wilson, EDGE, Texas Tech

Here is where Bryce Young’s slide stops. The Las Vegas Raiders need a franchise quarterback, and Young might fit better in Las Vegas with its offensive line and weapons. Considering how poorly his rookie season has gone, it's a risky pick, but it’s still worth a gamble here for a team without a long-term answer at quarterback.

8. Atlanta Falcons – Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon

Original Pick: Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas

Bijan Robinson has had a nice rookie season, but the Atlanta Falcons could use another cornerback opposite A.J. Terrell. Before getting injured, Gonzalez looked like a future star at cornerback. He is expected to be fully healthy for the 2024 season and should return to being one of the top at the position in the NFL.

9. Philadelphia Eagles – Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State

Original Pick: Jalen Carter, IDL, Georgia

With Carter off the board, the Philadelphia Eagles go in a different direction at No. 9. They select Joey Porter Jr., who has been fantastic as a rookie. Porter doesn't solve the Eagles' problems in the slot, but he gives them another long, athletic cornerback to pair with Darius Slay and James Bradberry. With both Slay and Bradberry in their 30s, Porter would be a long-term option for the Eagles on the outside.

10. Chicago Bears – Darnell Wright, RT, Tennessee

Original Pick: Wright

The Chicago Bears traded down from No. 1 to No. 10 to pick up additional draft capital, but the front office fell in love with Darnell Wright. He has been fine during his rookie season, so there is no reason to go anywhere else here for Chicago. Wright projects as a long-term starter at right tackle for the Bears.

11. Tennessee Titans – Peter Skoronski, OG, Northwestern

Original Pick: Skoronski

You can make the case that the Tennessee Titans could take Will Levis here, but instead, we are sticking with their original selection. Peter Skoronski has missed some time with injuries as a rookie, but he’s been a high-quality starter whenever he’s been on the field. The Titans must rebuild their offensive line, and picking Skoronski was smart.

12. Detroit Lions – Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas

Original Pick: Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, Alabama

Bijan Robinson falls a bit in this re-draft, but the Detroit Lions scoop him up at No. 12. Jahmyr Gibbs has been an excellent addition to their backfield, but Robinson can do more between the tackles. Getting Robinson at this spot would be a fantastic value for the Lions. 

13. Green Bay Packers – Lukas Van Ness, EDGE, Iowa

Original Pick: Van Ness

Lukas Van Ness has had a quiet rookie season, but the Green Bay Packers knew that he would be a long-term project when they selected him at No. 13. He has just one sack this season but has done some good work in the run game. Adding a dynamic weapon like Zay Flowers or Jordan Addison here is tempting, but the Packers must be better in the trenches. 

14. Pittsburgh Steelers – Broderick Jones, RT, Georgia

Original Pick: Jones

The Pittsburgh Steelers traded up for Broderick Jones in the 2023 NFL Draft with the idea that he would be the long-term solution at left tackle. Instead, he’s played mostly at right tackle, and the run game has improved. He still needs a lot of work in pass protection, but there is no reason to give Pittsburgh anyone else at this spot.

15. New York Jets – Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College

Original Pick: Will McDonald, EDGE, Iowa State

There are several wide receivers here who would make sense for the Packers, but Zay Flowers would be the best fit with Garrett Wilson. He has been a dynamic receiver as a rookie and would give the New York Jets a much-needed speed boost on offense.

16. Washington Commanders – Steve Avila, OG, TCU

Original Pick: Emmanuel Forbes, CB, Mississippi State

You can make a case that the Washington Commanders need to use this pick on defense, but the Commanders' interior offensive line needs a ton of work. Steve Avila can play four positions and has looked good in Los Angeles. Taking a guard at No. 16 might feel a bit rich, but the interior offensive line for Washington has been an issue all season. 

17. New England Patriots – Puka Nacua, WR, BYU

Original Pick: Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon

The New England Patriots have needed a play-maker at receiver for years, but they’ve been unable to find one in the draft. Puka Nacua would be a perfect fit in Bill O’Brien’s offense because he can play every receiver spot and easily create separation against man coverage. More explosive receivers will be selected later in Round 1, but Nacua has been the most productive to date. 

18. Detroit Lions – Sam LaPorta, TE, Iowa

Original Pick: Jack Campbell, LB, Iowa

The Lions were able to steal Sam LaPorta at the top of Round 2 in the actual NFL Draft, but there is no way he would slip that far in a re-draft. LaPorta has been incredible as a rookie, racking up 539 receiving yards and five touchdowns. He is already the team's second-most reliable receiver, and his role in the offense should only grow moving forward.

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Calijah Kancey, DT, Pittsburgh

Original Pick: Kancey

Calijah Kancey missed a good chunk of the preseason and regular season with a calf injury, but he’s come on over the last month. In his previous four games, he's recorded seven tackles for a loss, four quarterback hits and two sacks. He will be an elite pass-rushing defensive tackle in no time and, frankly, is a downright steal here at No. 19. 

20. Seattle Seahawks – Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State

Original Pick: Smith-Njigba

The Seahawks wanted a slot receiver to pair with DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, so they went with Jaxon Smith-Njigba over Flowers. After a slow start to the season, "JSN" has become more involved in the offense and has started to make some splash plays. The Seahawks may move off of one of Metcalf or Lockett in 2024, giving Smith-Njigba an even more significant role in the offense.

21. Los Angeles Chargers – Tank Dell, WR, Houston

Original Pick: Quentin Johnston, WR, TCU

The Los Angeles Chargers needed an influx of speed on their offense, but they just happened to pick the wrong player at No. 21. Tank Dell has been one of the most explosive receivers in the entire league and has helped change the culture in Houston. Pairing him with Justin Herbert would be downright scary, and he would probably have the Chargers in playoff contention right now.

22. Baltimore Ravens – Jordan Addison, WR, USC

Original Pick: Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College

With Flowers, Nacua, Smith-Njigba and Dell all off the board before pick No. 21, the options at receiver are a bit limited. However, a receiver was this team's most significant need. Jordan Addison has been fantastic for the Vikings and would fit well in Baltimore. He might not be as dynamic after the catch as Flowers, but his route running and quickness would be a welcomed addition to the offense.

23. Minnesota Vikings – Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, Alabama

Original Pick: Jordan Addison, WR, USC

Most of the top receivers were wiped off the board, so the Minnesota Vikings pivot here and select Jahmyr Gibbs to make their offense more dynamic. Alexander Mattison and Ty Chandler have been fine this season, but neither has Gibbs' receiving upside. He falls in this re-draft due to positional value more so than his play.

24. New York Giants – Dawand Jones, RT, Ohio State

Original Pick: Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland

The offensive line has been a disaster for the New York Giants all season, primarily due to injuries. But one of the biggest problems is that Evan Neal hasn't taken the next step at right guard. The selection of Dawand Jones at No. 24 would allow Neal to kick back to guard, where he dominated at Alabama. This pick could solve two spots for the Giants.

25. Buffalo Bills – Dalton Kincaid, TE, Utah

Original Pick: Kincaid

It took an injury to Dawson Knox before Dalton Kincaid was unlocked with the Buffalo Bills. But he’s now the second-most dynamic weapon on that offense. Over the last six games, Kincaid has averaged 59.3 receiving yards per game and has scored two touchdowns. The Bills need to get him even more involved in their offense because he is a special weapon who can help take this unit to the next level.

26. Dallas Cowboys - Mazi Smith, DT, Michigan

Orginal Pick: Smith

Mazi Smith hasn't had a huge rookie season, but the Dallas Cowboys needed to address their interior defensive line. He has started to make more plays as a pass rusher over the last few games, which is an encouraging sign. While play has left some wanting more, there aren’t many better options available here for Dallas. 

27. Jacksonville Jaguars – Keeanu Benton, DT, Wisconsin

Original Pick: Anton Harrison, OT, Oklahoma

The Jacksonville Jaguars took Anton Harrison with their selection, and he's been fine for a rookie offensive tackle, but adding someone such as Keeanu Benton would make their defense even more dynamic. Benton has been highly disruptive to the Steelers and has played all over the defensive line. Pairing him with Josh Allen and Travon Walker would give Jacksonville one of the better defensive lines in the AFC. 

28. Cincinnati Bengals – Matthew Bergeron, OG, Syracuse

Original Pick: Myles Murphy, EDGE, Clemson

Cordell Volson has been a significant liability at left guard, and teams have attacked him all season long. Selecting Matthew Bergeron would give them a Day 1 starter at left guard, who also has some position flexibility to play offensive tackle if needed. Bergeron is coming off his best game of the year in Week 12, and his arrow is pointing way up. He projects as a high-floor starter for the next several years.  

29. New Orleans Saints – Tuli Tuipulotu, EDGE, USC

Original Pick: Bryan Bresee

The New Orleans Saints selected Bryan Breese at this spot, but they might have been better off taking Tuli Tuipulotu here instead. The former USC pass rusher has been excellent in Los Angeles, recording eight tackles for a loss and eight quarterback hits. He has four sacks on the season, but his best play has come as a run defender. Adding him to the Saints' defensive line would make a big difference right away.

30. Philadelphia Eagles – Brian Branch, S/SCB, Alabama

Original Pick: Nolan Smith, EDGE, Georgia

Safety has been a mess this year for the Eagles, and that’s why they had to make a trade for Kevin Byard. Brian Branch would solve some of their safety issues and would also help them in the slot. He wears many hats on game day and is precisely the type of player Philadelphia has been missing in its secondary.

31. Kansas City Chiefs – Rashee Rice, WR, SMU

Original Pick: Felix Anudike-Uzomah, Edge, Kansas State

Ideally, the Kansas City Chiefs can add a Dell- or Nacua-type at this spot, but both players went way earlier in this re-draft. Instead, Kansas City takes Rashee Rice, who the team grabbed at No. 55 in the actual NFL Draft. Rice had his best performance of his career against the Raiders in Week 12, catching eight passes for 114 yards and a score. He might be the most reliable receiver on the roster already. Getting him at the bottom of the second round is proving to be a steal for the Chiefs.