As the NFL season comes to an end, it’s already time for fans of several franchises to start looking towards the 2023 NFL Draft. With several teams now well out of playoff contention, it is time to look at the incoming draft prospects who could possibly turn things around.
This mediocre campaign for the Atlanta Falcons is nearly complete with one game left on the schedule in Week 18. The rebuilding NFC South franchise will not get the luxury of having a pick in the top five, but will still have a decent draft spot come April. Here, we’ll focus on where the Falcons currently stand with and who they could possibly select with their first-round pick.
Falcons draft order: No. 8 pick
Atlanta defeated the Arizona 20-19 on Sunday. With that victory and both the Raiders and Rams losing, the Falcons have dropped down to the No. 8 pick int the first round. Their season finale next week comes against the Buccaneers, who have already wrapped up the NFC South and have nothing to play for. If Tampa Bay rests its starters and Atlanta wins that matchup, the Falcons could drop down the board even further. Definitely something to monitor heading into Week 18.
Falcons mock draft: Edge Tyree Wilson, Texas Tech
The Falcons have a number of needs, particularly at quarterback and edge rusher. At No. 8, top quarterbacks like Bryce Young and potentially CJ Stroud will be off the board while top defensive prospects like Will Anderson Jr., Jalen Carter, and Myles Murphy will be long gone as well. If the team is desperate for a franchise QB, it could take a gamble with someone like Will Levis or Anthony Richardson here, but that would be a bit too dicey.
We’ll play it safe and say that Atlanta reaches into the next tier of edge rushers and takes Texas Tech’s Tyree Wilson. The 6’6”, 275-pound prospect has the combination of size, strength, and speed to be an effective weapon for the Atlanta pass rush and he showed that by combining for 27.5 TFLs and 14 sacks in his previous two seasons in Lubbock, TX. He suffered a foot injury towards the end of the season and that could possibly prevent him from rising even further up the board. That may play into the Falcons’ favor.