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TSF Final Mock Draft

The NFL Draft is almost upon us and along with it comes one of the most enjoyable draft time exercises in the form of mock drafts! Who do the experts think your team will draft? Which player’s stock is rising rapidly and who’s is plummeting out of the 1st round? Will your team nab that flashy offensive weapon that will amount to fantasy greatness or will they shore up that offensive line and keep your Quarterback upright for once? The NFL draft comes with so much intrigue and excitement and we’re here for it! Truth Serum Football has hosted a full first round mock with experts, analysts and writers proudly representing their team.

1st Carolina Panthers: C.J. Stroud, QB, Ohio State: CJ Stroud Top 2: Young vs. Stroud My pick goes to the Buckeye. Stroud has a full toolbox at his side and he’s the kind of QB you want to build around. He has the proven arm with 85 passing touchdowns in a 2 year span and the legs to make big plays happen on the ground. He shows strength in reading defenses and has the accuracy to make passes against hot reads and the blitz. As for his weaknesses, they are very manageable and easily fixed. He’s the all around QB talent that Carolina needs - he wasn’t a Heisman Finalist 2 years in a row by mistake. -Kirk Davenport of Truth Serum Football

2nd Houston Texans: Bryce Young, QB, Alabama: With the 2nd pick in the 2023 NFL Draft the Houston Texans select QB Bryce Young from Alabama. Make no mistake about it, Young is the best QB in this draft class and the Texans will be thrilled if he falls to them at two. He may be on the smaller side for a QB, but what he lacks in height he makes up for with excellent arm strength, elite accuracy, quick feet, and an immense football IQ. Young also sports a high release point which should help him play larger than he is. If he is not the first overall pick in this draft, Carolina will have made a terrible blunder. - Deepak Chona of Sports Med Analytics

3rd Arizona Cardinals: Will Anderson, DE/OLB, Alabama: Anderson is the first round super star Arizona can acquire with their early pick. Plain and simple. Watt is now gone, and Anderson would be a fine addition to a talented young defensive front that new coach Jonathan Gannon is likely expected to bolster. It would be in Arizona’s best interest to trade down and acquire an additional pick while still swooping Anderson. -Tom Cochran of Truth Serum Football

4th Indianapolis Colts: Will Levis, QB, Kentucky: Will Levis’ stock has been all over the board from Houston's pick 2 to Tampa's pick 19. The Colts would be smart to take him at pick 4. They have shown time and again the type of quarterbacks they like to draft or pick up in free agency and Levis is that type. His big arm and ability to stay in the pocket will help establish his name. The addition of veteran Gardner Minshew is the right person to help lead Levis develop the style the Colts want. The next thing the Colts will need to do is fortify their O-line to give Levis the time he needs to grow with the team and stay healthy. -Nathan Stults of Truth Serum Football

5th Seattle Seahawks: Jalen Carter, DT, Georgia: With the team friendly extension of Geno Smith, the Seahawks will certainly consider taking Anthony Richardson with this pick and grooming him as the quarterback of the future. However, their pressing needs on the defensive line won’t allow them to pass up on Jalen Carter. Despite the issues that have developed off the field as well as a disappointing pro-day, Carter’s dominance on the field still has many people believing that he is the most talented football player in the draft class. The Seahawks have been active in free agency this offseason and are ready to compete in the NFC this year and adding Carter to the mix will only strengthen their chances of being relevant in 2023. -Dr. Kevin Murray of Fantasy Football Unlimited

6th Detroit Lions: Tyree Wilson, DE/DT, Texas Tech: Detroit will continue to beef up their defensive line. They will take the approach that if the opposing Quarterback can’t be comfortable, then the secondary can go to work! -Tyler Tompkins of Truth Serum Football

7th Las Vegas Raiders: Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida: If four other franchises pass on the Florida QB prospect, the Raiders can’t afford to flinch. The ’07 Russell gaffe needs to remain in the rear view and not ruin an opportunity. Las Vegas isn’t one player away from contention. They aren’t even a handful of moves away from contention. Richardson, in a similar way to Lamar Jackson, would represent an opportunity to mold a system around a specific talent. Superbowl winning teams are typically led by prolific play behind center. Jimmy G and McDaniels would offer the perfect opportunity to cultivate Richardson’s command as a pocket passer while also building in offensive wrinkles for the future of the franchise. The 2023 Raiders need defense but the future of the franchise will depend on the signal caller. -Justin Kirkland of Truth Serum Football

8th Atlanta Falcons: Nolan Smith, OLB/DE, Georgia: The Falcons have spent a lot of money on defense this offseason, but interestingly, not a lot of cash on the pass rush. Nolan Smith is the first step at improving an over decade-long poor pash rush resume. Nolan Smith may be on the shorter side for a traditional defensive end, but his clear athleticism should more than make up for it. He blew up the combine by running faster than Saquon Barkley, and his production at UGA more than speaks for itself. The Falcons need to get better (and faster) on defense and in a division that is 100% up for grabs and isn’t very good at the QB position, the time to strike is now and Smith is the type of player to inject a shot of adrenaline to a too-often disappointing Falcons defense. -Chris McConnell of Roto Bros Fantasy Football

9th Chicago Bears (from Carolina): Paris Johnson, OT/G, Ohio State

Paris Johnson was an easy pick for the Bears. He's only given up 2 sacks since 2020. He will plug a huge need at Tackle and help Justin Fields stay on the field. - Colt Martin, Truth Serum Football

10th Philadelphia Eagles (from New Orleans): Peter Skoronski, OT/G/C, Northwestern: Howie Roseman can’t help himself when it comes to drafting foundational pieces of a team. With the current anchor of the offensive line, Lane Johnson being 32 years old and talking about retiring after the 2024 season. The Eagles utilize the #10 pick to pick up Skoronski, who grades out as the top-rated OT in this draft class. -Will Combs of Truth Serum Football

11th Tennessee Titans: Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State: With the 11th pick in the 2023 NFL draft the Tennessee Titans select WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba from Ohio State University. The Buckeyes were represented by arguably the two best rookie WRs in the NFL last year with Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson. Some people think their former teammate Njigba may be better than both. The Titans have holes all over the team, and if the right QB falls they may make a move, however, if they stand pat, Njigba would pair incredibly nicely with last year's first round pick Treylon Burks. Njigba is the total package and has great speed, agility, and route running ability. In addition to his elite separation and ability to take the top off the defense he can also make the contested catch, and has the ability to line up all over the field. He is known as a leader and has been commended for his incredible work ethic. He will be a tremendous addition to this Tennessee team that is finally starting its rebuild. -Ryan Lee Miller of Truth Serum Football

12th Houston Texans (from Cleveland): Lukas Van Ness, DE, Iowa: With the 12th pick in the 2023 NFL Draft the Houston Texans select Luka Van Ness, Edge Rusher out of Iowa. The Texans started this draft by bolstering their offense, now they focus their attention to the defensive side of the ball. Van Ness possesses an impressive combination of size, strength, and agility. Ness is explosive off the snap and uses his hands well to engage with blockers and shed them in pursuit of the passer. His knack for disrupting plays and his ability to diagnose the play as it develops will pair well with this emerging Texans defense who has a secondary group that showed a lot of promise last season. -Deepak Chona of Sports Med Analytics

13th Green Bay Packers (from NY Jets): Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois: Taking Witherspoon seemed like a no brainer slipping to #13 for us. We were looking at offensive help, but very happy with the value. With Stokes coming off an ACL tear and Rasul Douglas getting older, Witherspoon seems like a perfect compliment to star Jaire. Witherspoon's 2022 season was one of the highest graded seasons of all time. We can't wait to see what he can bring! -Colt Martin of Truth Serum Football

14th New England Patriots: Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State Porter Jr. is a Belichickian press cornerback from Penn State with loads of potential. The son of former pro bowler Joey Porter from the Pittsburgh Steelers has plenty of characteristics of his father who was a true alpha on the gridiron. Belichick and co decide to further strengthen one of their strengths and bolster this already formidable secondary. -Zach Kurtz of Truth Serum Football

15th New York Jets (from Green Bay): Broderick Jones, OT/G, Georgia: If Paris Johnson Jr and Skoronski are already off the board, this is the pick for NY. They really need to boost their OL. Especially the OT spot with Becton coming back from injury. Jones only has 2 full year experience under his belt, and his inexperience is an issue; along with only having experience at Left Tackle and none at Guard or RT. His build is reminiscent of Becton in college and he's a monster blocking in open spaces. Realistically he can sit behind Duane Brown at LT if need be. It wouldn't force him to start year 1 unless Becton struggles and they move Brown to RT. -Jimmy Palucci of Truth Serum Football

16th Washington Commanders: Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon: The priority for this team is to sure up the protection for their young and inexperienced QB, or to help the backend of this already very stout defense. With the run on offensive lineman early in the draft and the focus on other teams getting pass rushers, having a player like Gonzalez, who is 6-foot-1 with outstanding length, ran a blazing 4.38-second 40-yard dash at the combine which shows his elite speed, and backing up what he did in 2022, he has the potential and ability to shut down almost any WR, and become the next Island in the sea of NFL. -Gabe Levy of Truth Serum Football

17th Pittsburgh Steelers: Jordan Addison, WR, USC The latest NFL craze of drafting wide receivers to join their old college quarterbacks has produced crazy success! Jaylen Waddle to play with Tua Tagovailoa, take away the concussions and that team was a SB contender last season. Ja'Marr Chase to play with Joe Burrow, Super Bowl appearance. Devonta Smith to play with Jalen Hurts, Super Bowl appearance. Now all three of those squads had another stellar receiver with them, with Tyreek Hill, Tee Higgins and AJ Brown, but I could see the Steelers snagging Jordan Addison to play with his college QB Kenny Pickett and hope one of the other receiver's steps up in year 2 of Picketts career! -David Dzienis of Truth Serum Football

18th Detroit Lions: Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland The Detroit Lions look to fill the spot vacated with the departure of Jeff Okuda via the trade with Atlanta and pick the physical cornerback Deonte Banks out of Maryland. -Tyler Tompkins

19th Tampa Bay Buccaneers: O’Cyrus Torrence, G, Florida: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers go best player available as far as Offensive Lineman go which is a glaring need. Torrence has the makings of a long time pro bowler and is already used to playing in the extreme heat. -Jeremiah Fairfield of Truth Serum Football

20th Seattle Seahawks: John Michael Schmitz, C, Minnesota: The Seahawks will look to fortify their offensive line with the best center in the draft class. Could Pete Carroll & John Schneider shock everyone with a selection of Bijan Robinson? It’s entirely possible however I believe they will be disciplined and strengthen the run game with the selection of John Michael Schmitz. -Dr. Kevin Murray of Fantasy Football Unlimited

21st Los Angeles Chargers: Quentin Johnston, WR, TCU: With the 21st pick in the NFL draft the Los Angeles Chargers select Quentin Johnston, WR from TCU. The Chargers season ended in disappointment last season but the team at least knows they have their franchise signal caller for years to come. In this draft they will focus on giving him another weapon. While the Chargers have a great one two punch with Keenan Allen and Mike Williams, they have both struggled to stay on the field full time. Adding Johnston gives the Bolts a huge target who has speed to stretch the field and separate from defenders, and the ability to go up and win battles in the air when he can’t. Johnston should be a great red zone target for Herbert, and could also help by being a valuable blocker in the red zone with his large frame. -Tom Jordan of The Real Deal Fantasy Football

22nd Baltimore Ravens: Cam Smith, CB, South Carolina: If indeed the Ravens keep this pick and don’t trade it for a Lamar replacement. Ravens shore up their secondary with this pick. With Marcus Peters departing for free agency and the signing of OBJ the Ravens look to bolster their secondary. -Andrew Newson of Truth Serum Football

23rd Minnesota Vikings: Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee: I think there's a good chance the Vikings move down and pick up extra draft capital with only having 4 picks in this draft. With that said this is a no trade mock draft. Captain Kirk is in the last year of his contract and they've made no signs of any intention to extend him so, I think they have to draft a QB and let him learn the ropes for a year behind Kirk. Though I'm not as big on Hooker as some, he has some potential and the other quarterbacks I think will be gone. So the Vikings take a flier on Hooker and let him learn for a year behind Kirk then give him the reigns. Hooker is most likely to be available as he's coming off a torn ACL. So the Vikings land a tall dual threat QB and hopefully strike gold with their quarterback of the future. -Elijah Lippert of Elijah Lippert’s Sports Podcast

24th Jacksonville Jaguars: Brian Branch, S, Alabama: As the Jaguars released Shaquille Griffin during the opening of Free Agency, they look to fill a top need with their 1st round pick and grab one of the top Defensive Backs left on the board. The versatile Brian Branch can easily lineup at Cornerback or Safety and will add much needed depth in the Jaguars Secondary. -Evan Creel of From Your Standpoint Football Media

25th New York Giants: Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College: Coming into the draft the Giants have some real needs at CB, ILB, WR, IOL, and the D line depth. With the 5th year option on the table, I like to forgo “cheaper” positions such as ILB and IOL for later rounds. In an ideal world the Giants would grab a stud press corner with the 25th pick. When the time came the best DB left was Emmanuel Forbes and with guys like Zay Flowers and Calijah Kancey still on the board, CB would have to wait. Zay Flowers can create the separation that the Giants have desperately been lacking on offense and provide another piece for an injury plagued WR room. Kancey would be a great pick as well in order to succeed Leonard Williams, whose contract is up the following year. -Richard Mikhaylov of Truth Serum Football

26th Dallas Cowboys: Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas: With the 26th pick in the NFL the Dallas Cowboys select RB Bijan Robinson from Texas. The Cowboys parted ways with longtime RB Ezekiel Elliot in the offseason. While they did retain the services of breakout star Tony Pollard, he is coming off of an injury and was only brought back on the franchise tag, signaling that a long term deal isn’t in the works. Dallas will instead go out and grab the best RB prospect since Saquon Barkley with their first round pick. Robinson is a do it all work horse back who should be a star the moment he steps foot on the star. Robinson is a dynamic runner who has excellent top end speed and can break a play open at anytime. He is also incredibly powerful and will have no issues pushing the pile and breaking tackles along the way. His patience will help him find the correct hole to hit, and he is also a natural pass catching back and runs good routes. He will be exactly what Zeke used to be for the Cowboys and is a no brainer at the 26th position. -Jordan Thomas of Truth Serum Football

27th Buffalo Bills: Trenton Simpson, LB, Clemson: Typically I’m all in on a wideout with pick 27 in this draft. However due to the previous projected picks I decided to go the LB route. Clemson’s Trenton Simpson is just like the other LBs in this draft where none of them are eye popping first round pick solids. Simpson is a big physical ILB who excels against the run. At 6’3, 235 pounds, Simpson has the makings of a good Tremaine Edmunds fit even if he isn’t projected to be a first round pick. Simpson has a some bright pros but also comes with some glaring cons. Simpson is a versatile LB playing both inside and outside in college. He hits hard and has great range. This is where the cons come into play. He’s a bit inconsistent in the block shedding which led to a decrease in sacks his last collegiate year. Overall at 27 you’re typically choosing a round 2 guy anyway which is where Simpson fits in most mocks. He led Clemson in forced fumbles, has good range, versatility, and hits hard. I think he’ll be a good pick up to try and fill the hole Edmunds left. -Jacob Neal of Truth Serum Football

28th Cincinnati Bengals: Micheal Mayer, TE, Notre Dame: The Cincinnati Bengals have had a good off-season and they have brought in players to help fill needs and they can go Best Player Available (BPA) at pick 28. One of the needs that they should address is the TE position. They haven't had a Top 10 TE since they took Tyler Eifert in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft from where else, Notre Dame.

I think if Mayer falls to them at 28, they need to make the move. Mayer is 6’5” and weighs 250 pounds. He played in-line most of time at Notre Dame, and was a great run blocker, which is something the Bengals desperately need help with. He can also move the chains. Averaging over 800 yards and 8 TD's the last two seasons at ND, he should be able to slot right into that spot on this team. Burrow will lean on the TE, which is evidenced by Uzomah and Hurst who got paid off their one season in Cincinnati.

Throw in the fact that the Offensive Coordinator, Brian Callahan recently stated he wanted to incorporate more two TE sets into the offense. This bodes well for the Bengals to run to the podium and select Mayer if is still there. -Jeremiah Orcutt of FantasyHolics

29th New Orleans Saints (from SF via MIA and DEN): Darnell Washington, TE, Georgia: The pick for me came down to three players. Arkansas linebacker Drew Sanders, Alabama running back Jahmyr Gibbs and Washington. Given the Saints history of selecting big and physical guys in round one, and because head coach Dennis Allen said recently he wants a more physical offense, the massive tight end from the two-time national champion Georgia Bulldogs is my pick. -Mike Pompa of Truth Serum Football

30th Philadelphia Eagles: Calijah Kancey, DT, Pittsburgh: When the 2nd rated DT in the draft class falls to you at #30, you take it. Especially, when you have a 32 year old Fletcher Cox looking at retiring in the next couple of years. Kancey lacks prototypical size, but makes up for with elite athleticism. He should factor into the rotation in year one, and will likely be the favorite to be the starter when Cox finally hangs up his cleats. -Will Combs of Truth Serum Football

31st Kansas City Chiefs: Darnell Wright, OT, Tennessee: The number one priority for the Chiefs needs to be protecting Patrick Mahomes. With Orlando Brown and Andrew Wylie out the door, only really replaced by the mediocre Jawaan Taylor, the Chiefs badly need a new Tackle. Darnell Wright has the elite skillset to be an immediate NFL starter, though he'd be better suited to right tackle, he could slot in on the left if needed. In the actual NFL Draft, Wright is a legitimate top 10 shot so this is amazing value. -Ben Wasley of The Fantasy First Down

Thanks for reading and enjoy the draft!

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