2023 NFL Draft: The 10 best players still available with the first round now complete
The first round of the NFL Draft is complete, and now it's time to look ahead to Round 2!!!
Here are the 10 best players available heading into Friday's second round of the draft
Will Levis, QB, Kentucky
Levis is the best available player right now, that's left. While some of the "Top 5 pick in the draft" hype may have been overblown, he's still got prototypical size at 6-foot-4 and weighing 229 pounds. He had a bit of a bumpy road in college where he saw some success, but couldn't find consistency.
Still, the size is something you can't ignore and it's worth noting that Kentucky struggled on the offensive line all season long, with Levis throwing to mostly young receivers. He'll be taken early in the second round because teams are going to love his size and know that he has good football in him, he just didn't show it super consistently last year.
Michael Mayer, TE, Notre Dame
Put simply, Mayer still being on the board is the most shocking name outside of Levis on this list. The powerfully built 6'4 tight end was the best player on Notre Dame's offense this year, making 67 catches for 809 yards and nine touchdowns.
That included eight catches for 98 yards in his final game with the Irish. He should be one of the first names off the board in Friday's second round.
Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee
Hooker burst onto the scene the last two seasons at Tennessee, playing himself into Heisman Trophy contention, prior to a season-ending injury in the second to last game of the season. He has great size at 6-foot-3 and weighing 217 pounds. He has a giant arm and great accuracy at the quarterback position too, completing 69 percent of his passes for 27 touchdowns and just two picks.
However, there are some concerns. His age is a concern at 25-years-old, so there's a question about his ceiling because of that. Also, he tore his ACL near the end of the season last year, so there's a concern about his health. Still, the game tape speaks for itself and any team will be lucky to grab him in Day 2.
Jalin Hyatt, WR, Tennessee
In the same way that Hendon Hooker blew up this season running the Tennessee offense, Hyatt blew up as his lead receiver. The burner was one of the best wide receivers in all of college football this year, finishing with 1,267 yards receiving on 67 catches. Included in that were 15 touchdowns, all for a staggering 18.9 yards per completion.
Put simply, someone is getting a burner who should have an instant impact in the league for years to come.
Brian Branch, S, Alabama
The Crimson Tide had three first rounders, but Branch was expected to join Bryce Young, Will Anderson and Jahmyr Gibbs - and the fact that he didn't is somewhat shocking.
A three-year contributor for the Crimson Tide, Branch finished third on the team in tackles with 90 (58 solo), to go along with two interceptions this season, earning All-American honors from ESPN, CBS and other outlets.
He also had 14 tackles for loss, a staggering number for a safety. Like everyone on this list, he should be off the board early in the second round on Friday.
Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State
He has the family ties and the size to play at the NFL level. He's 6-foot-2 and a half and weighs 193 pounds, finishing with 27 tackles this season. Quarterbacks would not throw to him this year and he still earned All-Big Ten honors. His size, awareness and coverage instincts are elite, but he needs to get better with his closing speed, still he's a massive pickup for anyone needing secondary help.
Darnell Washington, TE, Georgia
Whenever you speak about the freaky athletes that Georgia has put out there the last few years, Washington might be No. 1 on that list. The 6'7 264 lb. Washington is both an elite blocker, but also incredible pass catcher for his size, finishing with 28 catches and two touchdowns this season.
Washington has elite size and elite ball skills, and with his blocking ability, should have no shortage of suitors in Round 2.
Luke Musgrave, TE, Oregon State
Musgrave got overshadowed by Dalton Kincaid and Michael Mayer in this draft, but he's still a very good tight end for any team to grab. He's 6-foot-5 and 253 pounds. Musgrave had his season last year cut short by a knee injury, but was having a great season before that for the Beavers with 11 catches in just two games.
His combination of height, size, and explosiveness are elite. He needs to get better at blocking, but he projects as a great pass-catcher with very good athleticism as well.
Jonathan Mingo, WR, Ole Miss
Mingo might be the most underrated wide receiver in this draft. He's 6-foot-1 and weighs 226 pounds. Last season was his best and he set the SEC on fire through the air. His size, speed, and athleticism are an unmatched combination. He needs to get better with his route-running, but he's going to be a steal for whoever grabs him because he has elite receiver in him.
Kelee Ringo, CB, Georgia
Ringo possesses some major physicial skills that set him apart in the secondary. He's 6-foot-2 and weighs 207 pounds. His speed is what sets him apart at his size. He's also been great in the running game too. He still has room to grow, especially by not being overly aggressive, but he has the tools to be very good in the NFL because of his physical traits alone.
Follow Jake Faigus on Twitter - @Jake_Faigus