Steelers trade up for their draft crush in final first-round 2023 NFL mock draft
8 Jaxon Smith-Njigba Wr Ohio State
The Falcons are in a weird spot. It seems Desmond Ridder will be their guy after letting Marcus Mariota go. Oddly enough, when looking at mock drafts, there is no clear front-runner for their selection, except Tyree Wilson, and it seems unlikely he will fall that far.
Thus if the Falcons go with Ridder, give him the weapons he needs. He has Kyle Pitts and Drake London, so adding Jaxon Smith-Njigba might make sense here. They still need a premier running back, though. The Silver lining here is that if they draft Smith-Njigba Jahmyr, Gibbs could still be available with their 2nd round selection.
9 Pittsburgh Steelers: Paris Johnson, OT, Ohio State
Sure, the Steelers need help in multiple areas, but they also need to shore up the offensive line. With the offensive linemen they have already added in free agency, this might be their best move. The Steelers' offensive line needs to be in sync starting week one and eliminate the weakest links.
Granted, the Steelers need a corner; however, Kenny Pickett suffered two concussions in 2022. It makes more sense the greater need is to protect Kenny Pickett rather than target a corner with their first pick. They do that by taking Paris Johnson. However, only if they trade up. Don’t discount the Steelers pulling the trigger here.
10 Philadelphia Eagles: Christian Gonzales CB Oregon
The Eagles will still have an elite offense, but they allowed Patrick Mahomes to steal the show with only 30 minutes left to win the Superbowl. Taking a corner with lockdown potential helps ensure that it never happens again. However, if they do not take a corner, you could see Lukas Van Ness, Myles Murphy, or Nolan Smith go off the board. They may need a running back; this year's running back class does not have many great options if you want to take one in round one.
11 Tennessee Titans: Peter Skoronski, OT, Northwestern
While the Titans may weigh their options here, they can use a premium offensive lineman. Paris Johnson will go off the board to the Bears if the Steelers do not trade up; thus, Peter Skoronski is the most logical selection here, or perhaps Broderick Jones. Anything else may be a bit of a surprise. However, trading up get one of the quarterbacks is not beyond the realm of possibilities.