Mel Kiper 2023 NFL Mock Draft: Final Round 1 Projections

Missouri, FEB 25 2023 - Interior view of The Union Station


The 2023 NFL Draft is set to kick off on Thursday, April 27, and run through Saturday, April 29. The festivities — which will air on ESPN, ABC, and the NFL Network — will be held in the plaza outside of Union Station in Kansas City, Missouri.

That means the draftniks and fans are running out of time to get their predictions in, and for ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. it means the time has come for his final mock draft of the season.

Ahead of Round 1 on Thursday, Kiper released the final version of his 2023 mock draft.

After months of speculation and prospects moving up and down the draft boards, Kiper has settled in on projecting Alabama‘s Bryce Young to the Carolina Panthers with the No. 1 overall pick.

“I’m confident the Panthers will make the right call here and take Young, my top-ranked quarterback,” Kiper wrote. “He’s going to be their face of the franchise for years to come, though they need to focus on putting talent around him so they’re not picking in the top 10 in 2024.”

At No. 2, Kiper has the Houston Texans passing on the remaining top quarterbacks and rolling with the top edge rusher Will Anderson Kr., also of the Crimson Tide.

That’s when things start to get interesting. Kiper projects a major trade, with the Tennessee Titans moving up to the No. 3 pick to select Ohio State quarterback CJ Stroud. Rounding out the top five is Kentucky’s Will Levis heading to the Indianapolis Colts and the Seattle Seahawks selecting Georgia star defensive lineman Jalen Carter.

Who does Kiper have your favorite team drafting in his first 2023 mock draft?

A look at his top 10 projections can be seen below, while the full two-round mock draft can be seen by heading over to

Mel Kiper Mock Draft 2023 – Top 10 Picks

  1. Carolina Panthers (via CHI) — Bryce Young, QB, Alabama
  2. Houston Texans — Will Anderson Jr., OLB, Alabama
  3. Tennessee Titans (via mock trade with ARI) — CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State
  4. Indianapolis Colts — Will Levis, QB, Kentucky
  5. Seattle Seahawks (via DEN) — Jalen Carter, DT, Georgia
  6. Detroit Lions (via LAR) — Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois
  7. Las Vegas Raiders — Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon
  8. Atlanta Falcons — Tyree Wilson, DE, Texas Tech
  9. Chicago Bears (via CAR) — Paris Johnson Jr., OT, Ohio State
  10. Philadelphia Eagles (via NO) — Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas
NFL Draft Order 2023: Complete List Of Picks For All 7 Rounds
NFL Draft Order 2023: Complete List Of Picks For All 7 Rounds