Now that the 2023 NFL Draft is behind us, there are six teams that stood out – good and bad. Only a few teams went in and grabbed all the necessary pieces they need. Some went in with the idea of building for the future. Others? Want to win now.
When looking at the newly drafted talent for each team, it’s hard to judge who’s going to help their team get to a Super Bowl next year. You can’t make that judgment right now. However, you can almost pinpoint which teams will excel and which might have missed the mark for the 2023-24 season.
Below are the winners and losers of the 2023 NFL Draft.
From the very second pick in the first round, this night felt like it belonged to the Houston Texans. They were smart and aggressive in not only getting their second overall pick, quarterback C.J. Stroud, but they also turned around and got edge Will Anderson Jr. Balancing out the offense and defense they’re building over the next few years, the Texans didn’t mess around in this year’s draft.
New York Jets
A lot of people are underwhelmed with the New York Jets’ draft, but I think they did what they needed. They have their quarterback, Aaron Rodgers. Sure, they didn’t do much in terms of offensive weapons to help Rodgers. What they did do, however, was build a foundational offensive line that can compete with the likes of the Bills and Patriots. Much of the Jets’ season will rely on what they’re able to do with Rodgers under helm, but this draft I think puts them in pretty good position.
If anyone knows how to draft, it’s Howie Roseman. The Eagles do what they did last year but better and stockpile players from college football’s best team: the Georgia Bulldogs. Not only do the Eagles get two Bulldogs in the first round, but over the next few days they manage to get Kelee Ringo and DeAndre Swift in a trade with the Lions. This is smart for a few reasons. First, the connection between the guys will be majorly important. Second, bringing a Philly guy home will only make him want to ball out. What happened when the Eagles focused on these things last season? They made it to the Super Bowl.
Los Angeles Chargers
When you have a quarterback who wants to play for you and is passionately willing to play through pain and injury just to try to make the playoffs, the least the general manager could do is make some big swings in the draft. The Chargers didn’t really address any of their issues, didn’t try to trade up to get any of their needs. This leaves a lot of questions about how the rest of the offseason will go before training camp.
The Denver Broncos missed the draft this weekend. Clearly, that has to be the excuse. How do they go into this draft and practically stay quiet? No first-round pick is understandable, but it’s still worth trying to trade back in. Having to compete with the Chiefs, Chargers and Raiders, the Broncos are going to need some sort of competitive edge. Right now, they seem very lackluster and not in an urgent mood to win.
San Fransisco 49ers
If Brock Purdy is your guy next season, wouldn’t the best thing to do to keep him from getting injured in the NFC Championship game again be to build a solid offensive line? The 49ers really missed the mark on building something so that they don’t have to rely on their 43rd-string quarterback. There are high hopes for the 49ers to be contenders next season, but that idea is slowly slipping away as they really need to get an offensive line together to protect whoever is at quarterback.
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