Until the Browns come on the clock: A top-43 2023 NFL Mock Draft




 

After the blockbuster trade for controversial quarterback Deshaun Watson last offseason, the Cleveland Browns will have to wait until the 2025 NFL Draft to see a first round pick next to their name. This makes mock drafts hard to follow as many do not go beyond the 32nd pick in the draft. However, not here as we do a 2023 NFL Mock Draft for the first 43 picks of the draft so that we can get an idea of what kind of talent may be on the board for the Browns.

Defensive tackle, defensive end, and wide receiver are largely the three most needed positions this offseason, either via the draft or free agency. What kind of talent can the Browns come away with as they come on the clock with the 43rd overall pick in the draft his upcoming Spring?

List

One free agent from each team the Browns could target to improve their roster

Browns Ethan Pocic
Browns Ethan Pocic  

Indianapolis Colts (via CHI): C.J. Stroud, QB, Ohio State

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

The Indianapolis Colts need to get the quarterback position right after years of throwing in veterans under center. They also have an owner hungry enough to win to come up and grab the top pick in the draft. Welcome to Indianapolis, C.J. Stroud.

Houston Texans: Bryce Young, QB, Alabama

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

With DeMeco Ryans now running the show, the Houston Texans now have to hit at the quarterback position. With Stroud off the board, Bryce Young fits the bill as four quarterbacks in this class get interchanged on a week-to-week basis in mock drafts.

Arizona Cardinals: Will Anderson, EDGE, Alabama

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

Ranked as the best defensive prospect by many, the Arizona Cardinals have Alabama pass rusher Will Anderson fall right into their lap. This is the perfect spot to potentially trade out of with quarterback-needy teams as well.

Chicago Bears (via IND): Jalen Carter, DT, Georgia

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bears are in a position to come away with a haul as they ride with Justin Fields into their future. Trading with the Colts, they drop back just far enough to add significant assets, but not too far back to land the blue-chip defensive tackle in Jalen Carter.

Carolina Panthers (via SEA through DEN): Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Doug Engle/Gainesville Sun

With two quarterbacks off the board already, the needy teams scramble to get to the front of the line. After hiring Frank Reich as their next head coach, the Carolina Panthers have to get their offensive guru a quarterback. The ultra-athletic and toolsy Anthony Richardson does the trick here.

Detroit Lions: Christian Gonzalez, CB, Oregon

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Christian Gonzalez is a blue-chip prospect. And as the Detroit Lions stand pat with the sixth overall pick in the draft, they land the best defensive back on the board in Gonzalez to upgrade their putrid secondary.

Las Vegas Raiders: Paris Johnson Jr., OT, Ohio State

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Barbara J. Perenic/Columbus Dispatch

The Las Vegas Raiders are certainly a team that could come up and snag a quarterback as the Derek Carr era ends. However, with veterans like Aaron Rodgers on the market, they use this pick to land a top offensive tackle instead in Paris Johnson Jr.

Atlanta Falcons: Myles Murphy, EDGE, Clemson

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons have swung and missed on numerous pass rushers in free agency and the draft. That does not stop them from swinging here again with the athletic Myles Murphy.

Seattle Seahawks (via CAR): Brian Branch, S, Alabama

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

With two first rounders, the Seattle Seahawks have an opportunity to continue to kick draft assets down the road if they can find a trade partner in the top-five. They do so here, fall back to ninth, and still land the hard-hitting Brian Branch to add another piece to their young and promising secondary.

Pittsburgh Steelers (via PHI): Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

the Pittsburgh Steelers drafted their young quarterback a year ago in Kenny Pickett. Now they take drastic measures to protect him, trading up to the tenth overall pick to land the Georgia offensive tackle Broderick Jones. While Jones may not be the most refined tackle today, he has the ceiling as a perennial Pro Bowler and best in the class.

Tennessee Titans: Will Levis, QB, Kentucky

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

The smoothest transition out of the Ryan Tannehill era would be Kentucky quarterback Will Levis, who comes from a play-action-heavy, wide-zone offense. The Titans stand pat, do not panic, and take Levis just outside the top 10.

Houston Texans (via CLE): Tyree Wilson, EDGE, Texas Tech

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Had the Browns not traded for Watson, this is where they would have come on the clock. However, instead, the Texans are back on the clock and address the defensive side of the ball by taking the cyborg, Tyree Wilson.

New York Jets: Peter Skoronski, OT, Northwestern

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Jets are hoping Mekhi Becton can overcome his injury woes and be the first round tackle they drafted him to be. However, their right tackle situation is ugly, and their interior has been a revolving door of bodies. Here they take Peter Skoronski, who can play tackle or guard.

New England Patriots: Jordan Addison, WR, USC

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The wide receiver room in New England is an island of misfit toys. If they have the opportunity to take the best wide receiver in the draft, they have to do it. They do so here in this 2023 NFL Mock Draft by selecting USC wide receiver Jordan Addison.

Green Bay Packers: Michael Mayer, TE, Notre Dame

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Lucas Peltier-USA TODAY Sports

While the Rodgers era may be coming to an end, the Green Bay Packers seem content to ride it out with Jordan Love. Here, they get Love a new toy in the top tight end in the class in Notre Dame's Michael Mayer.

Washington Commanders: Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

It is hard to find a more physical cornerback than Devon Witherspoon. The Illinois defensive back has risen up draft boards and is now in the conversation to be the first cornerback off the board. He is the second one off the board here as the Washington Commanders address a need in their secondary.

Philadelphia Eagles (via PIT): Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

An absolute dog, the Philadelphia Eagles land the second cornerback taken here in Maryland's Deonte Banks. James Bradberry is set for free agency, and the Eagles may need to spend their money elsewhere. Banks on a rookie contract is the answer to that problem here.

Detroit Lions: Bryan Bresee, DT, Clemson

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

Clemson defensive tackle Bryan Bresee did not have the dominant 2022 season that he anticipated but also went through more off the field than anyone could imagine. While he might slip down the boards a bit, he is still going to test off the charts and deserves to be a first round pick. After landing Gonzalez early in the draft, the Lions now land Bresee to give their anemic defense a massive facelift.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: B.J. Ojulari, EDGE, LSU

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

LSU's pass rusher is better than other players mocked ahead of him in this draft. He is explosive, long, flexible, and has a great plan of attack when looking to get after opposing quarterbacks. He heads to Tampa Bay here.

Seattle Seahawks: Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Jaxon Smith-Njigba is getting killed on big boards because he did not play much football in 2022. However, he still possesses the best body control in the class, is slippery after the catch, and is a crisp route runner. He's the second wide receiver off the board here, looking to take over for Tyler Lockett long-term in Seattle.

Miami Dolphins (FORFEIT)

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

The Miami Dolphins have forfeited the 21st overall pick after the Brian Flores tanking scandal from an offseasons ago.

Los Angeles Chargers: Dawand Jones, OT, Ohio State

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

No player was more dominant than Ohio State right tackle at the Senior Bowl, even if he did participate for only one day. Given his size and how fast his feet remain, someone is going to take him in the first round. That team is the Los Angeles Chargers here, bookending him with Rashawn Slater.

Baltimore Ravens: Quentin Johnston, WR, TCU

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It may be a shock to see TCU wide receiver Quentin Johnston drop this far, but there are reasons to have reservations about his game. He does not use his catch radius to his advantage, and he is not as clean as one would like against press-man coverage, but he is still a first rounder here as the Baltimore Ravens need to add significant talent to their wide receiver room.

Minnesota Vikings: Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

The fourth cornerback comes off the board in this 2023 NFL Mock Draft, as the Minnesota Vikings dive back into the first round cornerback market yet again. After Gonzalez, Witherspoon, and Banks all come off the board, they land long and physical Penn State corner Joey Porter Jr.

Jacksonville Jaguars: O'Cyrus Torrence, OG, Florida

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports

The roster in Jacksonville is surprisingly well-rounded. And now they get Calvin Ridley back in 2023 as well. One area of need, however, is along the interior of their offensive line. So why not take the best interior offensive lineman in the draft in Florida's O'Cyrus Torrence?

New York Giants: Trenton Simpson, LB, Clemson

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants were starting Micah McFadden and Jaylon Smith at the second level of their defense by the end of the 2022 season. That must be remedied. Here they land the ultra-explosive and athletic Clemson linebacker, Trenton Simpson.

Dallas Cowboys: Josh Downs, WR, North Carolina

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

North Carolina wide receiver Josh Downs is the dream for the Browns with the 43rd overall pick. However, it is unlikely he gets there. The Dallas Cowboys saw their wide receiver underperform after hilariously shipping Amari Cooper off for a box of crayons last offseason. They look to remedy that by selecting Downs here.

Buffalo Bills: Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Syndication Austin American Statesman

The Buffalo Bills have to figure out their run game. Their offense needs an offensive lineman or two, but they cannot look to be competitive again in 2023 without significantly upgrading their rushing attack. Bijan Robinson is the best running back that has come out in years and would give the Bills a massive facelift on the ground.

Cincinnati Bengals: Anton Harrison, OT, Oklahoma

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

In back-to-back seasons, the Cincinnati Bengals have gotten close to a Super Bowl title, but it has been derailed by dominant defensive lines. They sought to make upgrades last season, adding La'El Collins, Ted Karras, and Alex Cappa upfront, but they should not be done. Here they add Oklahoma offensive tackle, Anton Harrison.

New Orleans Saints: Lukas Van Ness, EDGE, Iowa

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

One of the most explosive and powerful pass rushers in the 2023 NFL Draft, Lukas Van Ness has been on a historic rise this season despite never starting a game for the Hawkeyes. With the ability to play into three-technique and out on the edge, he makes a great replacement for the impending free agent Marcus Davenport.

Kansas City Chiefs: Keeanu Benton, DT, Wisconsin

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

After a dominant showing at the Senior Bowl this past week, Wisconsin defensive tackle Keeanu Benton has the making of a top-50 pick. He is incredibly light on his feet for his size, so the NFL Scouting Combine will treat him well as well. When it is all said and done, he may just end up a top-32 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Philadelphia Eagles: Nolan Smith, EDGE, Georgia

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

After landing Banks earlier in this 2023 NFL Mock Draft, the Eagles stick to the defensive side of the football here and land Georgia pass rusher Nolan Smith. Stout against the run for his size, Smith can be the long-term running mate across from Hassan Reddick.

Pittsburgh Steelers (via CHI): Emmanuel Forbes, CB, Mississippi State

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Texans: Siaki Ika, DT, Baylor

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona Cardinals: Kelee Ringo, CB, Georgia

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

Indianapolis Colts: Darnell Wright, OT, Tennessee

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Rams: John-Michael Schmitz, C, Minnesota

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports

Seattle Seahawks: Mazi Smith, DT, Michigan

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Las Vegas Raiders: Antonio Johnson, S, Texas A&M

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Carolina Panthers: Darnell Washington, TE, Georgia

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

News Joshua L Jones

New Orleans Saints: Jalin Hyatt, WR, Tennessee

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Ut Vs Missouri

Tennessee Titans: Will McDonald, EDGE, Iowa State

Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Browns 2023 NFL Mock Draft  

Cleveland Browns: WR Tyler Scott, Cincinnati

Browns Tyler Scott 2023 NFL Draft
Browns Tyler Scott 2023 NFL Draft  

Browns land Tyler Scott in the 2023 NFL Mock Draft.

Perhaps the most slept-on receiver in this draft class, Cincinnati wide receiver Tyler Scott is an electric playmaker with the throttle to effortlessly get in and out of his routes with suddenness and violence. He is going to run a blazing fast time and will be just what the Browns need to add an element of verticality to their offense heading into a make-or-break 2023 season.

Other candidates on the board included Pitt defensive tackle Calijah Kancey, Boston College receiver Zay Flowers, Arkansas linebacker Drew Sanders, and more.

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Story originally appeared on Browns Wire

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