NFL Draft Big Board 2.0: Top 30 Prospects Includes Big Risers And Fallers Following Scouting Combine

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Following the 2023 NFL Draft Scouting Combine, several players saw their draft stocks change. Thus, we thought it would be appropriate to update the NFL Draft Big Board.

Previously, we listed the Top 20 prospects available in the draft. For this iteration, the Top 30 players will be listed. Each player’s previous rank will also be given, so you can see how their evaluation may or may not have changed over the past few weeks.

OutKick’s 2023 NFL Draft Big Board

1. Bryce Young, QB, Alabama (Junior)

Previous: 1

Though Young measured on the small side — as expected — at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine (5’10” 204 pounds), he’s still the best quarterback prospect in this year’s draft. For me, Young displays elite pocket awareness for a young quarterback.

There are a lot of things that you can teach quarterbacks and traits that can be improved, but it’s hard to coach general football awareness. Because Young already has that important skill, I consider him to be the top guy this year.

Bryce Young remains atop OutKick's 2023 NFL Draft Big Board.
Bryce Young remains atop OutKick’s 2023 NFL Draft Big Board. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

He’s better than both Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa and they have had success in the NFL. He played in the Sugar Bowl despite knowing he would leave school, showing leadership and a love of football and desire to win. Young’s ceiling might not be Patrick Mahomes or Joe Burrow-level, but he can certainly win a lot of games at the NFL level. That’s why he’s #1 on OutKick’s NFL Draft Big Board.

2. C.J. Stroud, QB, Ohio State (Junior)

Previous: 3

I’m buying into the CJ Stroud hype. No, not because of his throwing session at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine, but because I can’t find the major weakness. The kid can throw, he can run (but chooses not to for the most part) and he’s a gamer.

I saw this comment he made during a press conference and it cemented for me that mentality that makes him an elite prospect.

This, to me, should be the exact way all dual-threat quarterbacks approach the game. This is why I’m not a fan of Justin Fields. Fields is a one-read, maybe two-read, and then take-off quarterback. That doesn’t portend long-term success. Stroud already understands the importance of staying in the pocket with his eyes downfield. He’s got NFL size (6’3″ 214 pounds) and everything scouts crave. His pocket awareness is good, but not elite, which is why I still slightly prefer Young. But it’s close.

3. Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas (Junior)

Previous: 2

Robinson slides down one spot because of my new-found love affair with Stroud and not because of anything he did or didn’t do. Robinson is going to be an elite NFL player, he just plays a less significant position. But he did everything at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine that he needed to do and cemented his status as a top prospect in on my NFL Draft Big Board.

4. Will Anderson, EDGE, Alabama (Junior)

Previous: 4

There are people around the league who believe Anderson is the best player in the draft. I’m not quite there, but it’s easy to see what they see. Athletically, Anderson is a freak. He had 34.5 sacks at Alabama, second only to Hall of Famer Derrick Thomas in school history. His Combine measurements and performance were off the charts. In fact, there are already comparisons to DeMarcus Ware and Khalil Mack. That’s what we call “good company.”

5. Tyree Wilson, EDGE, Texas Tech (RS Senior)

Previous: 9

Will Anderson is the clear top EDGE prospect in this year’s draft, but after that there are a lot of players who will vie for the next spot. I’m going with Wilson. Originally, I had Clemson’s Myles Murphy in this spot, but I’m not going with Wilson. He didn’t do much testing at the Combine (only bench press) but I like his experience and attitude profile.

Rare amongst this year’s top prospects, Wilson spent five seasons in college (two at Texas A&M before transferring to Tech). He’ll turn 23 in May, so he’s a bit older than the other prospects. He’s extremely long (6’6″, 271 pounds) and garnered buzz for how much he LOVES attacking the player across from him. While someone like Jalen Carter has questions about his football passion, no one questions Wilson’s drive and desire to dominate opponents. With crazy length and size to go along with a motor that doesn’t quit, Wilson could be a Draft Day steal — even inside the Top 10.

6. Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State (Junior)

Previous: 12

I’ve said before that I don’t think there’s an elite wide receiver in this class, but there are a lot of talented players. I’ve changed my mind. I think there are a lot of talented players, but Smith-Njigba is elite. I had him as a Combine “winner” because he absolutely dominated in the short-area quickness drills, which is extremely important for a young NFL wide receiver. The questions around Smith-Njigba are about his health, not his ability, and he looked pretty damn healthy to me.

7. Myles Murphy, EDGE, Clemson (Junior)

Previous: 5

Murphy slides a couple spots, but mostly because I think Tyree Wilson deserves to be the second EDGE player off the board. I like Wilson’s experience over Murphy’s pedigree. But the pedigree is quite ridiculous. Murphy ranked inside the top 10 prospects coming out of high school, top five according to some services. The interesting note about his NFL Draft Scouting Combine measurements is that he came in far lighter (258 pounds) than he was listed in college (275 pounds). I’m going to keep an eye out for information around that discrepancy because it could shed some light on Murphy as a prospect.

8. Jalen Carter, DL, Georgia (Junior)

Previous: 6

Look, Jalen Carter is a freak. Size, strength, speed … he has literally everything you want in a football player. Based on physical traits, he’s arguably the best player in the draft. But there are questions about his passion for football. That’s a big problem, because passion doesn’t generally improve AFTER you sign a multi-million dollar contract. Then, of course, there are the recent legal issues. I don’t think he’ll fall outside of the Top 10 based on talent alone, but there are too many questions for me to put him any higher than eighth.

Jalen Carter is sliding down NFL Draft Big Boards and it has nothing to do with his on-field play or natural abilities.
Jalen Carter is sliding down NFL Draft Big Boards and it has nothing to do with his on-field play or natural abilities. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

9. Paris Johnson Jr., OT, Ohio State (Junior)

Previous: 10

Two things went in favor of Johnson at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine — 1. He measured over 6’6″ and came in at 313 pounds with excellent arm length (36″) and 2. His biggest competition for first offensive lineman selected, Peter Skoronski, measured extremely short arms (under 33″). I had Johnson as the top offensive tackle in the draft and that was easily cemented during the NFL Draft Scouting Combine.

10. Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State (RS Junior)

Previous: 8

I still believe Joey Porter is the best of this cornerback class. There is a lot of debate amongst NFL people about which corner goes first, but I’m on Team Porter. He has ideal size for a corner (6’2 1/2″) and although he looks very lean, he’s extremely strong (17 reps on bench press, tied for second among DB). He tested really well at the Combine and, for me, did everything he needed to do to keep that top spot.

11. Bryan Bresee, DT, Clemson (Junior)

Previous: 13

There are a lot of top recruits from the 2020 high school recruiting class all over this Big Board, but none ranked higher than Bresee. The Class of 2020’s number one recruit, no one can match his pedigree. His college production never really matched up with his ability, but he continued to show elite athleticism at the Combine, running a 4.86 40-yard dash. That’s extremely impressive for a dude that also measured 6’5″ and 298 pounds. The biggest question is whether the athletic profile will ever translate to on-field success. My bet is that he needs a great coach to get the best out of him, so his landing spot will be critical.

12. Quentin Johnston, WR, TCU (Junior)

Previous: 7

Johnston is one of my biggest fallers this draft season. In my first Big Board, I had him as the #7 prospect. I’ve mocked him as high as #4 overall. But I’m starting to have doubts. His lack of contested catch ability is going to be an issue at the next level, along with drop problems.

Athletically, he’s a freak. Among potential first-round receivers, he’s easily the biggest (6′ 2 1/2″ 208 pounds). His wingspan (81′ 1/2″) is ridiculous. He didn’t run the 40 or do any agility drills, but did post the third-highest vertical (40′ 1/2″) and broad jump (11′ 2″) among wide receivers. Again, the physical tools aren’t in question and I still have him as a Top 15 prospect. But Smith-Njigba is my WR1.

13. Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon (Sophomore)

Previous: Not Ranked

OK, fine. I’m now in on Christian Gonzalez. Is everyone happy? A lot of people feel Gonzalez is the best corner in the Draft and previously I just didn’t see it. But I’m willing to accept that everyone can’t be wrong and his NFL Draft Scouting Combine performance was really, really good. So good, in fact, that I had him as a “winner.” Good enough to move into the Top 15 and the second-best corner in the class.

Christian Gonzalez put on a performance during the Scouting Combine that makes him worthy of being one of the fastest risers on the OutKick 2023 NFL Draft Big Board.
Christian Gonzalez put on a performance during the Scouting Combine that makes him worthy of being one of the fastest risers on the OutKick 2023 NFL Draft Big Board. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

14. Nolan Smith, EDGE, Georgia (Senior)

Previous: 20

I think others are finally starting to come around on Nolan Smith. I’ve seen him outside the Top 30 on some NFL Draft Big Boards and that just makes 0 sense. The kid has a crazy pedigree and put up great performances when healthy. Therein lies the key. The #1 ranked recruit in the 2019 class, Smith could have left school last season but decided to return. Unfortunately, he suffered a torn pectoral in November and missed the rest of the season.

But at the Combine, he showed exactly what those of us who believe in his talent see. He ran a sub 4.4 40-yard dash, which is insane for a guy who’s 6’2″ and nearly 240 pounds. He also posted a vertical jump 3.5″ better than the next highest defensive end. The kid has raw talent for days and just like Bresee probably needs the right mentor to get his game to the next-level. And if he reaches that next-level, look out.

15. Mazi Smith, DT, Michigan (Senior)

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I like Smith quite a bit more than other evaluators because we’ve seen what big-time interior lineman can do for a defense at the NFL level — think Chris Jones of Kansas City or Quinnen Williams of the Jets. Smith is the same height as Williams (6′ 3″) but weighs about 20 pounds more (Smith weighed 323 at the Combine). He put up 34 reps on the bench press, which was the most among all defensive players. Only one player put up more total reps, USC offensive lineman Andrew Vorhees (38). Smith can be a beast at the next level and I’m happy to rank him higher than others.

16. Cam Smith, CB, South Carolina (RS Junior)

Previous: 14

I swear I didn’t purposefully ranks three Smiths right in a row. Probably seems lazy, but total coincidence.

Anyways, this Smith lacks elite traits physically, but he can just flat-out play the cornerback position. He came in slightly taller (6′ 1″) than he was listed in college (6′ 0″) but also lighter (180 pounds vs. 190 pounds). He doesn’t have top-end speed (4.43 40 time). But that’s overlooking what he put on tape. Teams who like Joey Porter but miss out on the Penn State product would love to grab Smith, a similar player albeit just a notch below.

17. Peter Skoronski, OT, Northwestern (Junior)

Previous: 11

OK, it’s time to end the Skoronski slide. But here’s what I wrote when I ranked him 11th on my previous Big Board: “His arm length will be something to monitor at the NFL Scouting Combine because really the only knock on him as a franchise left tackle could be lack of elite length.” And, yes, he measured just 32 1/4″ arm length. That’s well below the 33″ threshold that most teams look for. Yes, he says it doesn’t matter. But to many team, it does. It’s going to be tough for him against long, elite defensive ends at the next level and that’s just a fact. Still, he is technically sound and if he gets moved inside to guard, can be potentially elite.

18. Brian Branch, DB, Alabama (Junior)

Previous: Not Ranked

I’m moving Branch into my Top 20 despite a less-than-impressive NFL Draft Scouting Combine showing. Why? I just think the kid can play football. Those who like Branch don’t point to elite athleticism because he doesn’t have it. He ran a 4.58 40 and that’s admittedly slow. His broad jump was solid and his vertical was slightly below average. But I don’t care. He tested quite similarly to former Alabama defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick ran a faster forty, but Branch had slightly better jump numbers. They both benched the same amount (14 reps). Fitzpatrick is a three-time All-Pro player. I don’t know if Branch’s ceiling is that high, but I’d be willing to take a chance and find out.

19. Michael Mayer, TE, Notre Dame (Junior)

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All the talk at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine, with regards to tight ends, surrounded Darnell Washington out of Georgia. But what he did in shorts and a cutoff workout shirt doesn’t change that Mayer is the class of the position in this Draft. Mayer’s testing doesn’t compare to Washington, but he’s done it on a football field. For years. He’s still the #1 tight end. Don’t overthink it.

20. Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois (RS Junior)

Previous: 15

Witherspoon declined to work out at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine, instead electing to test at Illinois’ Pro Day. That’s fine, it just doesn’t help him as of now. But, what we do know is that he played extremely well last season and is a strong prospect.

According to PFF, Witherspoon “finished top-five in the country in completion percentage allowed, forced incompletions, passer rating allowed when targeted and yards allowed per coverage snap.” He had an incredible season, but it was the only season he really showed that top-level ability after three relatively quiet ones. He improved every season, and that’s a major positive, but I have Porter, Gonzalez and Smith as stronger prospects right now.

21. Lukas Van Ness, EDGE, Iowa (RS Sophomore)

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The knock on Van Ness is lack of experience. He redshirted his first year in Iowa City and played only 27 games, with no starts, over the next two seasons. He recorded 13.5 career sacks and never really played a full game. That being said, he’s a bull rush nightmare with the strength and power to beat Big Ten tackles. He’s big, coming in at 6’5″, 272 pounds, and strong. At the Combine, he posted the sixth-best “Relative Athletic Score” among all EDGE rushers, just ahead of Nolan Smith who tested extremely well. I still think Smith is a slightly better prospect, but don’t sleep on Van Ness.

22. Will Levis, QB, Kentucky (Senior)

Previous: Not Ranked

Arguably the most polarizing player in the draft class, Levis is likely to be a Top 10, if not Top 5, pick in the NFL Draft. But, that’s due more to him being a quarterback than his profile. Look, some people absolutely love Will Levis. I’m not one of them. But I don’t hate Will Levis. In fact, I think he’s a Top 25 prospect in this class. The problem is that he’s going to be drafted much higher than that and I don’t think the value is commensurate.

What we’ve seen in recent history is that you need Top 5 QBs to be productive almost immediately. Why? Because they need to get paid big bucks quickly. You don’t have the time to wait for them to develop. Levis needs time to develop. The team that takes him is pretty much guaranteeing a difficult decision in about three years. The only way it’s not a difficult decision is if he flat-out busts. So, it’s really a lose-lose.

23. Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College (Senior)

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Flowers falls a little bit after the NFL Draft Scouting Combine simply because he didn’t “wow.” Listed at 5′ 10″ in college, he measured slightly less than that at just over 5′ 9″ and 182 pounds. He ran a decent 40 (4.42) and posted a solid vertical for his height. But, again, at his size he needed to really dazzle to move up much. He’s still a Top 5 receiver in the class, but I have him as a slight faller after the Combine.

24. Calijah Kancey, DT, Pittsburgh (RS Junior)

Previous: Not Ranked

Kancey generated buzz at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine by running the fastest 40-yard dash for a defensive tackle, ever. He ran it in 4.67 seconds, .01 of a second quicker than Aaron Donald in 2014. Kancey is undersized, though, which keeps his stock a little deflated. He’s 6’1″ and 281 pounds with arms under 31″ in length. He’s tough to evaluate because of that, but his tape is really solid. He tests well and looks good on tape, so that’s enough to get him into the Top 25, despite size limitations.

Calijah Kancey is a Top 25 prospect on OutKick's 2023 NFL Draft Big Board, despite size limitations.
Calijah Kancey is a Top 25 prospect on OutKick’s 2023 NFL Draft Big Board, despite size limitations. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

25. Anton Harrison, OT, Oklahoma (Junior)

Previous: Not Ranked

Harrison didn’t do anything special at the Combine, but he measured 6′ 4″ and 315 pounds with arms over 34″ in length and did run a sub-five-second 40 (4.98). Plenty of size and athleticism to be an NFL tackle. Combined with his solid tape and strong play in college, no reason to think he’s not going to be a first-round pick.

26. Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland (RS Junior)

Previous: Not Ranked

If you’re a team in need of a cornerback, boy do I have good news for you! There are so many good options in this draft. So much so that Banks, who tested incredibly well at the Combine, ranks as just the fifth-best option for me. There are years where he could easily be a top 2-3 corner. Banks posted a incredibly quick 4.35 forty time (3rd best among CB), along with a 42″ vertical (tops among CB) and an 11′ 4″ broad jump (second among CB). Elite testing numbers, but I like those above him better on tape, so I have him just outside the Top 25 overall.

27. Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia (RS Sophomore)

Previous: Not Ranked

Jones played well at Georgia, ranking as PFF’s 55th best tackle in 2021 by before moving up to 35th last season. He measured 6′ 5″ and 311 pounds with nearly 35″ arms. He ran the fastest 40 among all offensive linemen, clocking in at 4.97 seconds. It’s neck-and-neck between him and Harrison to come off the board behind Johnson and Skoronski, in my opinion.

28. Jordan Addison, WR, USC (Junior)

Previous: Not Ranked

Addison tested extremely average at the Combine, without any numbers that helped him. They weren’t so bad that they cratered his stock, but he didn’t improve his draft stock. According to, his athleticism score ranked 43rd out of all the wide receivers at the Combine. That’s … not good. He barely bested 4.5 seconds in the forty (4.49). Also not good. But at the end of the day, the Combine is still guys running around in their underpants and Addison has good tape. He should still come off the board in the first round but if not, early second.

29. Dawand Jones, OT, Ohio State (Senior)

Previous: Not Ranked

The fact Ohio State has two offensive tackles ranked in the Top 30 is silly, really. But Jones is just an absolutely massive human being. He measured at 6′ 8″ and 374 pounds with 36 1/2″ arms. That’s ludicrous. PFF ranked him as a Top 20 tackle in each of the past two seasons. Coming from Ohio State, playing in the Big Ten and College Football Playoff, and being that size makes Jones a very safe first round pick, although elite upside is in question.

Dawand Jones is a massive human being and has cemented a spot in OutKick 2023 NFL Draft Big Board.
Dawand Jones is a massive human being and has cemented a spot in OutKick 2023 NFL Draft Big Board. (Photo by Randy Litzinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

30. Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida (Sophomore)

Previous: Not Ranked

Anthony Richardson blew up at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine with ridiculous testing numbers. Here’s the thing, though: no one questioned his athleticism. The question is whether or not he can throw the ball well enough to be an NFL quarterback. He’s a project player — he should not be starting next season and like Levis needs time to develop. Unfortunately, he meteoric draft rise means he’s not going to get it. That’s a shame because it could hurt his chances to become a solid NFL quarterback.

Stay tuned for updates to OutKick’s NFL Draft Big Board as draft season continues!

Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @OutkickDanZ

Written by Dan Zaksheske

Dan began his sports media career at ESPN, where he survived for nearly a decade. Once the Stockholm Syndrome cleared, he made his way to Outkick. He is secure enough in his masculinity to admit he is a cat-enthusiast with three cats, one of which is named “Brady” because his wife wishes she were married to Tom instead of him.

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