NFL Draft

2023 NFL Draft: Undervalued Players Rising Up Boards

The beginning of the NFL Draft on April 27 is quickly approaching. Players have gone through the all-star events, the NFL Combine and pro days looking to impress NFL teams. For some prospects, those events have allowed them to become late risers on team’s draft boards.

Here’s a look at six players climbing up the rankings just weeks before the draft begins.

Led by T.J. McCreight, The 33rd Team Scouting Department has been hard at work evaluating the top prospects in this class. A former player personnel executive for the Philadelphia Eagles and former director of college scouting for the Indianapolis Colts, McCreight has nearly 25 years of NFL scouting experience.

He is joined in the department by three scouts:

  • Kevin Cohn, a former scouting assistant for the Jacksonville Jaguars and assistant director of player personnel for the University of Connecticut.
  • Justin Casey, who worked for the Arizona Cardinals in football administration and then as the senior player personnel executive for the Montreal Alouettes.
  • Evan Pritt, a former scouting assistant for the Eagles and former player personnel assistant for the University of Maryland.

>> Full Big Board from The 33rd Team Scouting Dept.

6 Players Rising Up Draft Boards

Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee

Big Board Rank: 20

There are concerns about Hooker’s age and injury status, but when you watch the film, he has shown he is more than capable of becoming an NFL starting quarterback. Hooker is still recovering from the torn ACL he suffered in November and is already 25 years old. 

However, he has impressed coaches and general managers throughout the spring, especially through the interview process. He has top-level intelligence and has won teams over with his mind and his personality.

>> Hooker’s Full Scouting Report

Dawand Jones, OT, Ohio State

Big Board Rank: 15

It is hard not to take notice of Dawand Jones and his size (6-foot-8, 374 pounds) while watching Ohio State’s film. As team decision-makers get to know him, he is moving up the boards and is considered a top-level tackle prospect. You can’t coach size, and he has the movement skills to go along with it.

>> Jones’ Full Scouting Report

Jonathan Mingo, WR, Mississippi 

Big Board Rank: 43

Mingo has had a good spring and has checked all the boxes he needed to check. He has the size, speed, toughness, hands, ball skills and character to be a solid starting wide receiver in the NFL. He may not get the hype, but NFL teams value what Mingo brings to the table, and he has been a steady riser throughout the draft process.

>> Mingo’s Full Scouting Report

Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, Alabama

Big Board Rank: 21

Gibbs is one of the more explosive players in this draft, but due to his size (5-foot-9, 199 pounds) and positional value, he will go later than he should. He can turn on the jets, shows good eyes to find the hole and has value as a receiver in the passing game. He may have to be paired with more of a bruising type of back, but Gibbs is a playmaker that will make a team happy with his overall ability.

>> Gibbs’ Full Scouting Report

Garrett Williams, CB, Syracuse

Big Board Rank: 34

Williams was having an outstanding season before he suffered a torn ACL in late October. He has adequate size, but he has outstanding feet, hips, quickness, speed, body control and ball skills. If not for the injury, Williams would’ve competed to be one of the five best corners in this class. Some team could wind up with a steal by selecting him in the second through the fourth rounds.

>> Williams’ Full Scouting Report

Olusegun Oluwatimi, OC, Michigan

Big Board Rank: 59

The consensus All-American, Rimington Award winner and first Outland Trophy winner in Michigan history is rarely mentioned as the top center in this class. Fellow Big-10 centers John Michael Schmitz (scouting report), and lately, Wisconsin’s Joe Tippmann (scouting report) have made their way into the backend of the first round in mock drafts. Oluwatimi could be a great value pick with excellent instincts and strength to anchor an offensive line for years to come. >> Oluwatimi’s Full Scouting Report

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