2023 NFL mock draft: College football is back with a loaded class

2023 NFL Mock Draft, CJ Stroud, Ohio State Buckeyes -REDO Ohio State QB CJ Stroud
2023 NFL Mock Draft, CJ Stroud, Ohio State Buckeyes -REDO Ohio State QB CJ Stroud /
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Is it ever too early for an NFL mock draft? Absolutely not. The 2023 NFL mock draft season started immediately following the 2022 NFL Draft. As a matter of fact, NFL teams had their 2022 boards set and already started working on the 2023 NFL Draft class long before the 2022 NFL Draft even began.

College football is now upon us, which means 2023 NFL Draft talk is only going to heat up as prospects start showing out across the country and NFL fans dream of their team getting the chance to see some of these stars dressed in their team colors when they swap playing on Saturdays for playing on Sundays. And Week 1 of the College Football slate is absolutely loaded with fun games for NFL fans to watch with prospects galore.

College Football Week 1 schedule is a 2023 NFL mock draft dream

  • 6 Texas A&M, 8 Michigan, 13 NC State all play in the 12:00 ET window
  • 11 Oregon takes on 3 Georgia in the 3:30 ET window
  • 9 Oklahoma, 16 Miami, 19 Arkansas, 23 Cincinnati, 24 Houston all in 3:00 ET window
  • 14 USC in the 6:00 window
  • 10 Baylor and 20 Kentucky (star QB prospect Will Levis) in the 7:00 window
  • 1 Alabama at 7:30 ET
  • 2 Ohio State vs. 5 Notre Dame at 7:30 ET

Did I mention this is an NFL Draft fan’s dream slate of games? There’s really not much need to be leaving your couch with this kind of college football available. Attempting to predict the NFL Draft, even just a day before the event, is a borderline futile exercise. You might have a better chance at predicting the entire NCAA Bracket come March. With that being said, projecting where players could land in terms of draft slot and team fit is anything but a futile exercise. It’s a great way to get to know players and NFL team needs.

Let’s take a look at the top 31 picks in this 2023 NFL Mock Draft, starting with the Atlanta Falcons as the projected top overall team in 2022, and what kind of player-team fits we could be looking forward to in 2023. Keep in mind, the Miami Dolphins forfeited a first-round selection due to tampering with Tom Brady and Sean Payton.

2023 NFL Mock Draft
2023 NFL Mock Draft, CJ Stroud, Ohio State Buckeyes (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

1. Atlanta Falcons: CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State

1. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. QB. Ohio State. 44. CJ Stroud. player

Although the Falcons might have a little something interesting brewing between Marcus Mariota and Desmond Ridder, if they end up with the top overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, it would almost be a shocking upset if they went any direction besides quarterback. At this point, the distinction of QB1 for 2023 is going to come down to Stroud or Bryce Young of Alabama.

Stroud has had no shortage of great receivers around him at Ohio State, but he’s also been one of the best prospects to come out of a school that has produced recent first-round prospects Justin Fields and the late Dwayne Haskins.

Stroud would come into Atlanta with some outstanding targets in the passing game in young star tight end Kyle Pitts as well as top pick Drake London. He’s the top pick in this 2023 NFL mock draft scenario.