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Breaking down players selected in 1st round of NFL draft


The players chosen in the first round Thursday of the NFL draft:

1) Carolina Panthers — Bryce Young, QB, 5-foot-10, 200 pounds, Alabama

Scouting report: Poised leader and creative playmaker, who excels at buying time while seeing the entire field. Elite combination of instincts and intelligence with a good arm, but, boy, is he small for an NFL quarterback.

Fact: The national high school player of the year as a senior in California went on to become the 2021 Heisman Trophy winner as a sophomore at Alabama.

Notable: Alabama's first Heisman-winning quarterback is now the first Tide player taken No. 1 overall in the NFL draft since QB Harry Gilmer by Washington in 1948.

2) Houston Texans — C.J. Stroud, QB, 6-3, 214, Ohio State

Scouting report: Elite accuracy and touch combined with good size and arm strength. Has shown above-average athleticism, but has seemed reluctant to use. Can linger in the pocket and lock on receivers.

Fact: Threw 85 touchdown passes to break a Big Ten record held by Drew Brees for TDs over two seasons.

Notable: Third straight Ohio State starting quarterback drafted in the first round, following Dwayne Haskins (No. 15 to Washington in 2019) and Justin Fields (No. 11 to Chicago in 2021).

3) Houston Texans (from Arizona) — Will Anderson Jr., OLB, 6-3, 253, Alabama

Scouting report: Quick first step with an array and moves and power, and ability to dominate a game. Can quibble with his tackling and ability to finish against the run, but he’s probably the best prospect regardless of position.

Fact: Racked up 34 1/2 sacks and 62 tackles for loss in 41 games and won the Bronko Nagurski Award as the nation's top defensive player twice.

Notable: Texans traded up to become the first team since Washington in 2000 to make two of the first three picks in the draft (LB LaVar Arrington at No. 2 and OT Chris Samuels at No. 3).

4) Indianapolis Colts — Anthony Richardson, QB, 6-4, 244, Florida

Scouting report: The most intriguing prospect in the class, with Cam Newton-type size, athleticism and arm strength. The mechanics need work to fix accuracy issues.

Fact: Richardson had 13 career starts and only 393 pass attempts in three seasons at Florida.

Notable: The last two quarterbacks the Colts selected in the first round were Andrew Luck (No. 1 in 2012) and Peyton Manning (No. 1 in 1998).

5) Seattle Seahawks (from Denver) — Devon Witherspoon, CB, 5-11, 181, Illinois.

Scouting report: Aggressive, disruptive and physical defensive back, who took a huge leap as a senior to become one of the best defensive players in the country. Maybe a little too aggressive, especially at that size.

Fact: Didn’t play high school football until his junior year and spent a season at junior college before going to Illinois.

Notable: Witherspoon is the first cornerback drafted in the first round by Seattle since 2006 (Kelly Jennings at No. 31).

6) Arizona Cardinals (from Detroit via L.A. Rams) — Paris Johnson Jr., OT, 6-6, 313, Ohio State

Scouting report: Ideal size and athleticism, with some work to be done on technique and footwork.

Fact: Graduated with a degree in journalism and wrote for the school newspaper at Ohio State.

Notable: Highest drafted offensive tackle from Ohio State since Orlando Pace went No. 1 overall in 1997 to the Rams.

7) Las Vegas Raiders — Tyree Wilson, DE, 6-5, 271, Texas Tech

Scouting report: Ideal frame with long arms and room to add more pounds. Improved technique and footwork could unlock an even more fierce pass rusher.

Fact: His final season was cut short by a right foot injury in November that kept him from doing more than lifting at the combine and pro day.

Notable: Raiders last top-10 pick was also a edge rusher. They took Clemson's Clelin Ferrell No. 4 overall in 2019.

8) Atlanta Falcons — Bijan Robinson, RB, 5-11, 215, Texas

Scouting report: Vision, burst, finishing power and reliable hands make Robinson one of the best running back prospects in the past decade. Will need to be more decisive hitting holes in the NFL.

Fact: His 3,410 career yards rushing rank behind only Ricky Williams, Cedric Benson and Earl Campbell (all four-year players) in Texas history.

Notable: Robinson is the first Texas offensive player selected in the first round since QB Vince Young was taken by Tennessee No. 3 overall in 2006.

9) Philadelphia Eagles (from Chicago via Carolina) —- Jalen Carter, DT, 6-3, 313, Georgia

Scouting report: A game-wrecking package of power and quickness who collapses pockets and splits double-teams. Only questions appear to be about maturity and make-up.

Fact: Pleaded no contest to two misdemeanors (reckless driving and racing) and was sentenced to a year of probation and community service in March on charges related to an automobile accident that killed a Georgia teammate and football staffer.

Notable: Third defensive tackle from Georgia selected in the first round in the last two drafts, and second by Philadelphia. The Eagles took Jordan Davis at No. 13 last year.

10) Chicago Bears (from Philadelphia via New Orleans) — Darnell Wright, OT, 6-5, 330, Tennessee.

Scouting report: Thick and feisty blocker who played more comfortably at right tackle than left.

Fact: Held up about as well as any offensive lineman in the Southeastern Conference against Alabama star pass rusher Will Anderson.

Notable: First offensive lineman taken in the first round by Chicago since Kyle Long (No. 20 overall) in 2013.

11) Tennessee Titans — Peter Skoronski, OL, 6-4, 313, Northwestern.

Scouting report: Explodes off the line with power and balance. Locks up defenders in the running game. Legit concerns about whether he has the length to stay at tackle at the next level.

Fact: Three-year starter at left tackle after being a blue-chip recruit.

Notable: Skoronski is the second offensive lineman from Northwestern to be selected in the top 13 picks in the last three years. Rashawn Slater went No. 13 to the Chargers in 2021.

12) Detroit Lions (from Arizona through Houston via Cleveland) — Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, 5-9, 199, Alabama.

Scouting report: Explosive and shifty runner, with excellent hands, but doesn’t run with tackle-breaking power.

Fact: Averaged 11.7 yards per reception over three seasons at Georgia Tech and Alabama.

Notable: Last time two running backs were selected in the first 12 picks of the draft was 2017 when Leonard Fournette of LSU went No. 4 to Jacksonville and Christian McCaffrey of Stanford went No. 8 to Carolina.

13) Green Bay Packers (from N.Y. Jets) — Lukas Van Ness, DE, 6-5, 270, Iowa

Scouting report: Powerful player who has been used both inside and outside on the defensive line, but still relatively raw and inconsistently productive player.

Fact: Nicknamed “Hercules,” Van Ness was focused on hockey before high school and didn’t take off as a football prospect until junior year.

Notable: Green Bay has not selected a receiver, tight end or running back in the first round since taking WR Javon Walker in 2002.

14) Pittsburgh Steelers (from New England) — Broderick Jones, OT, 6-5, 311, Georgia

Scouting report: Excellent athlete (former high school basketball player) who has some questions about his build being ideal to play tackle in the NFL.

Fact: Never called for holding during his college career.

Notable: Last offensive lineman drafted in the first round by Pittsburgh was David DeCastro of Stanford at No. 24 in 2012.

15) New York Jets (from Green Bay) — Will McDonald IV, DE, 6-4, 238, Iowa State.

Scouting report: Long and lanky edge rusher with good burst off the line and agility. Lean build leads him to have some issues holding ground against the run.

Fact: Tied the Big 12 record for career sacks with 34.

Notable: McDonald is just the second player from Iowa State drafted in the first round and first since RB George Amundson went No. 14 to the Houston Oilers in 1973.

16) Washington Commanders — Emmanuel Forbes, CB, 6-1, 166, Mississippi State.

Scouting report: Elite ball skills in long and very slender frame.

Fact: Set a major college football record with six career interceptions returned for touchdowns.

Notable: Forbes is Mississippi State's fifth first-round pick in the last five drafts, including three in 2019 and OT Charles Cross last year to Seattle.

17) New England Patriots (from Pittsburgh) — Christian Gonzalez, CB, 6-1, 197, Oregon.

Scouting report: Long and fast (4.38 in the 40) cornerback who became more of a playmaker last season with four interceptions and 11 passes defended.

Fact: Former four-star recruit transferred from Colorado to Oregon after the 2021 season.

Notable: The Patriots last drafted a defensive back in the first round in 2010 (Devin McCourty from Rutgers at No. 27).

18) Detroit Lions — Jack Campbell, LB, 6-4, 249, Iowa.

Scouting report: Big and active run stuffer who will have to show more in coverage or as a pass rusher to become a three-down player in the NFL. There is potential for that.

Fact: Butkus Award winner as top linebacker in the nation in 2022.

Notable: Campbell and Van Ness give Iowa six first-round picks in the last five drafts.

19) Tampa Bay Buccaneers — Calijah Kancey, DT, 6-1, 281, Pittsburgh.

Scouting report: Undersized, but active and quick interior lineman. He’s no Aaron Donald, who came out of Pitt with a similar scouting report, but he’s disruptive.

Fact: Led major college football defensive tackles with 14 tackles for loss last season.

Notable: Last time Tampa Bay picked a defensive tackle in the first round was Vita Vea from Washington at No. 12 in 2018.

20) Seattle Seahawks

21) Los Angeles Chargers

22) Baltimore Ravens

23) Minnesota Vikings

24) Jacksonville Jaguars

25) New York Giants

26) Dallas Cowboys

27) Buffalo Bills

28) Cincinnati Bengals

29) New Orleans Saints (from San Francisco through Miami and Denver)

30) Philadelphia Eagles

31) Kansas City Chiefs


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