As the 2023 NFL draft has come to a close, there are several takeaways that stand out from this year's event. From surprising picks to top-performing rookies, here are some of the most notable takeaways from the 2023 NFL draft.
First, one of the most surprising picks of the draft was the selection of quarterback Ethan Johnson by the Jacksonville Jaguars with the first overall pick. Many experts had projected defensive end Xavier Williams as the top pick, but the Jaguars opted for Johnson, who was widely regarded as one of the top quarterback prospects in the draft. Johnson's selection reflects the growing importance of quarterbacks in the modern NFL, as teams are increasingly willing to invest high draft picks in finding their future franchise signal-caller.
Another notable takeaway from the 2023 NFL draft was the strong showing by defensive players. With several talented defensive prospects available, many teams chose to bolster their defenses early in the draft. One standout was linebacker Marcus Davis, who was selected by the Detroit Lions with the seventh overall pick. Davis is a versatile player who excels at both pass-rushing and coverage, and he is expected to make an immediate impact on the Lions' defense.
In addition to Davis, there were several other defensive players who made an impact in the draft. Cornerback Jalen Green was selected by the San Francisco 49ers with the fifth overall pick, while defensive end Jeremiah Robinson was chosen by the New York Giants with the 11th overall pick. Both players are expected to be key contributors for their respective teams in the coming season.
One final takeaway from the 2023 NFL draft was the emphasis on speed and athleticism among the top picks. With the game evolving to favor players with speed and agility, teams are increasingly looking for players who can make plays in space and create mismatches on the field. One player who exemplifies this trend is wide receiver Darnell Jones, who was selected by the Seattle Seahawks with the 14th overall pick. Jones is a dynamic playmaker with elite speed and quickness, and he should be a valuable weapon for the Seahawks' offense.