NFL Draft Predictions

Now that the dust has settled for free agency, NFL GMs are looking ahead to the 2023 NFL Draft to improve their rosters with aspirations of hoisting the Lombardi Trophy. There’s excitement and hope in the air for fans and the fantasy football community. Who will be the next Patrick Mahomes, Justin Jefferson, or Bijan Robinson? Which team will make a trade to shake up the draft and select a player who no one expects? In this exercise, I will make draft predictions for the 2023 NFL Draft and discuss the impact on Fantasy Football.

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Draft Selection Locks

  • Player: Brock Bowers
  • College/Position: Georgia, TE
  • Draft Selection: 5th, Los Angeles Chargers

Fantasy Impact – Greg Roman was named the Chargers’ offensive coordinator, which bodes well for the 2024 John Mackey Award winner. Roman was the OC for Jim Harbaugh in San Francisco from 2011-14, where former first-round pick, Vernon Davis, was highly utilized in his offense. Davis saw the second most targets for the Niners over three seasons from 2011-13. In Baltimore, Roman created a fantasy superstar with All-Pro Mark Andrews, who averaged 113 targets in four seasons. In 2021, Andrews saw a career-high 153 targets and became one of seven TEs in NFL history with at least 150 targets in a single season. Bowers enters the NFL with the perfect fantasy football scenario with Justin Herbert as his QB and a TE-friendly play-caller. Don’t be surprised if he is a top-five fantasy TE in 2024.

  • Player: Marvin Harrison Jr.
  • College/Position: Ohio State, WR
  • Draft Selection: 6th, New York Giants

Fantasy Impact – This prediction is based on Bowers heading to the Chargers and a trade at the fourth pick. The Giants luck into the best WR in the draft and immediately give their franchise QB Daniel Jones a WR1 to pair alongside Darren Waller. With the Saquon Barkley era over in New York, Brian Daboll changes the Giants’ offense to a pass-happy approach, thus elevating Harrison Jr.’s fantasy outlook. By the end of next season, he could be poised to be a 1st or 2nd round pick in 2025 fantasy drafts.

  • Player: Brian Wilson Jr.
  • College/Position: Louisiana State, WR
  • Draft Selection: 19th, Dallas Cowboys

Fantasy Impact – Jerry Jones was quiet in free agency and needs a first-round splash to help the Dallas offense. Wilson Jr. will make an immediate fantasy impact opposite of CeeDee Lamb for Dak Prescott. In a make-or-break season for Mike McCarthy, this WR pairing will give the Cowboys an explosive WR duo similar to the Eagles and Dolphins. Wilson Jr. could emerge as a low-end WR2 and a league winner in 2024. 


Draft Trade Selections

  • Player: J.J. McCarthy
  • College/Position: Michigan, QB
  • Draft Selection: 4th, Minnesota (From Arizona)

Fantasy Impact – Kevin O’Connell gets his franchise QB with the chance to mold McCarthy into his passing philosophy. Over the last three seasons, O’Connell-led offenses were top-five in passing yards and passing touchdowns with veteran quarterbacks Matthew Stafford and Kirk Cousins. McCarthy could surpass Sam Darnold by midseason with the opportunity to throw passes to Justin Jefferson, Jordan Addison, and T.J. Hockenson. The Wolverine makes for a great, sneaky dynasty pick if he gets a chance to develop in Minnesota with their pass-catching group.

  • Player: Romeo Odunze
  • College/Position: Washington, WR
  • Draft Selection: 11th, Arizona (From Minnesota)

Fantasy Impact – Kyler Murray gets a new dynamic playmaker with the departure of Marquise Brown. Odunze oozes with Pro Bowl potential at 6’3” and 216 pounds with 4.45 speed. The last time Murray was healthy and had an elite WR was in 2020 when DeAndre Hopkins finished as the WR5, where he tallied 115 receptions for 1,407 yards and 6 TDs. Odunze is already being compared to former Cardinal legend, Larry Fitzgerald, which piques my interest. The Washington Husky could emerge as the best fantasy WR in this draft due to no WR competition in Arizona and gets to catch passes from a former number-one overall pick.

  • Player: Bo Nix
  • College/Position: Oregon, QB
  • Draft Selection: 9th, Denver (From Chicago)

Fantasy Impact – Sean Peyton hit the refresh button with the release of Russell Wilson while creating a great opportunity for a QB in this draft. Peyton will trade up and select the QB that best fits his scheme with Nix. The Oregon Duck has the tools to be a successful QB with good decision-making as he holds the NCAA’s highest completion percentage of 77.4% in a single season. Nix walks into an offense with a talented TD machine in Courtland Sutton alongside a savvy offensive play-caller in Peyton. Wilson was a serviceable fantasy asset last season and if Nix gets the starting gig, he could surprise some folks. He is worthy of an early draft selection in dynasty formats.

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