Winners and Losers of the 2023 NFL Draft
May 1, 2023

Below are our expert’s winners and losers from the 2023 NFL Draft.




Arizona Cardinals

Monti Ossenfort did a very good job in starting this roster rebuild in his first draft as GM. Houston’s trade with Arizona from No. 12 to No. 3 did each team some good. The Cardinals now own a 2024 first-round pick from a team that isn’t ready to win now. And they were able to use some capital to move back up to No. 6 for Ohio State’s Paris Johnson, the best offensive lineman in the draft and someone they may have drafted No. 3 anyway.


Seattle Seahawks

Seattle added two premium players at valuable positions in the first round with Illinois CB Devon Witherspoon and Ohio State WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba. That is adding to the strengths at both positions, with Witherspoon joining Tariq Woolen in the secondary and Smith-Njigba joining D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett in the best receiver room in the NFL. In terms of helping the passing game and pass defense, the Seahawks excelled like no other team in the 2023 NFL Draft. Zach Charbonnet and Anthony Bradford were good value picks later in the draft and can contribute.


Pittsburgh Steelers

Successful teams understand the importance of winning in the trenches. The Steelers first added a talented offensive tackle in Broderick Jones, and then drafted one of the best blocking tight ends available in Darnell Washington, both of whom will help make Kenny Pickett and Najee Harris more successful. They also acquired pieces to upgrade their defensive front, like interior lineman Keeanu Benton and edge rusher Nick Herbig.


Houston Texans

Not only did the Texans get their franchise quarterback in C.J. Stroud, regarded as the best pocket passer in the draft, but they also added a potential face of their defense in Alabama pass rusher Will Anderson Jr. Wide receiver Nathaniel Dell should blossom into a key red-zone threat.





Washington Commanders

The Commanders did not have the best first two days of the draft. There is high bust potential with Mississippi State DB Emmanuel Forbes, and Ricky Stromberg was a reach. Washington appears set to go into the season with Sam Howell or Jacoby Brissett as the starting quarterback. The Commanders opted not to build too much around either via the draft, not tapping into the deep tight end class in Day 2 to back up Logan Thomas, who has missed 14 games the past two seasons. The offensive line needs more help than Stromberg, too.


Cleveland Browns

Mortgaging the future for Deshaun Watson meant the Browns had few resources to significantly upgrade their roster through the draft. Can their top pick, third-rounder Cedric Tillman, develop into a threat? Will the rest of the mid- to late-round picks (including UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson) be anything more than depth acquisitions?


Dallas Cowboys

They needed to find support for Dak Prescott and did so to a degree, adding a much-needed tight end in Michigan’s Luke Schoonmaker. But Dallas also needed offensive linemen and didn’t select one until the fifth round. The Cowboys needed impactful talent at wide receiver and didn’t take one until the seventh round.