Featuring the First Pick: Mock draft madness ahead of the 2023 NFL Draft, plus predicting the biggest surprises

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By Webdesk

Welcome to the Wednesday edition of the With the First Pick newsletter. Tomorrow, when I take my first sip of coffee, I’m going to drink Shannon Sharpe’s Diet Mountain Dew full. Everything will be blissful. The 2023 NFL Draft is finally here. Now, in my best motivational social media brooding tone, I’m going to say, let’s hit the park today in anticipation of tomorrow’s big event.

Of course, the rebranding of the Pick Six newsletter doesn’t stop now. And I, CBS Sports NFL Draft analyst Chris Trapasso, will be with you this glorious week. The sole purpose of this daily newsletter is to track everything that happens in the NFL and spin it into a draft angle.

Before I start, here’s your daily reminder to tell all your friends and that one uncle who always sends you fake draft links to sign up for the With the First Pick newsletter. Just click here and share this link with them.

Today’s NFL Mock Draft 🔮: Tyree Wilson to Bears

Tyree Wilson

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Josh Edwards wrote his annual “what would I do” commercial, and it’s fantastic. After some usual suspects at No. 1 and No. 2—Bryce Young with the Panthers and CJ Stroud with the Texans—he lets Wilson slide all the way to Chicago at No. 9 overall instead of landing in Houston with the second pick.

There are plenty of surprise selections late in Round 1. We get Syracuse offensive tackle Matthew Bergeron and Kansas State’s Felix Anudike-Uzomah within the first 31 selections. Josh is obviously pretty high on both. Here are some other notable combinations of prospect and team:

13. Green Bay Packers – Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State
14. New England Patriots – Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon
17. Pittsburgh Steelers – Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia
26. Dallas Cowboys – Dalton Kincaid, TE
31. Kansas City Leaders – Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, Alabama

‘With the First Pick’ podcast 🎧: Rumors and draft favorites

In the series finale, Ryan Wilson and Rick Spielman begin by tackling the Will Levis banana rumor and discussing the impact of the Aaron Rodgers trade on the draft. Then they dive into their 20 favorite candidates in the class of 2023 and finish with their 10 favorite sleepers. And there is a difference between those two groups.

Looking back at trade-ups for non-QBs over the past decade

Brandin is cooking


We always fall in love with trade-ups for quarterbacks in the draft. And they most likely are. But we usually do see a few draft days from teams targeting non-quarterbacks. This piece from contributor Bryan Deardo is a critical refresher on the latest swaps since 2013 because it charts those trades in detail, making it easy to discern the winner and loser of each trade. Good to have these in the front of the skull for tomorrow night.

Want your team to trade for a non-quarterback in the first round?

Predicting the design’s biggest surprises 👀

What did you think about this juicy piece from staffer Cody Benjamin on the eve of the service? It is almost scientifically proven that it is impossible to get even 8-10 picks correct in a mock draft. You know what’s also comparably difficult? Predict big surprises. And it is even more challenging in this design than others.

Cody has four quarterbacks that are in the top 5 (!) draft, among other surprises.

There are also some trading predictions. OK, stop reading. Go read Cody’s article.

News & Notes 📝

Will Levis


  • My last mock draft from 2023. invented I owed you this one, after writing one ad a week since the start of the football season. I can make a few adjustments on Thursday, but this is my last attempt at predicting the first round of the draft before the Panthers make their pick.
  • The first two picks don’t change the concept for Cardinals. Arizona GM Monti Oxenfort recently stated “I think if the swap makes sense and it’s the right decision for our team at the time, then we’ll do it… If the right move is to sit down and pick a player that we’ve done a lot. ” work through the process then we’re prepared to do that, so I wouldn’t say it’s more likely now than in the future.”
  • Will Brinson’s final 2023 mock. I’ve been showering you with ridicule for weeks now. Might as well keep the stream of commercials going until they’re obsolete in just over 24 hours, right? Here is Will’s last attempt at prediction this first round.

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