PLAYERS TO WATCH AT THE NFL DRAFT COMBINE

2023-02-18 · 5 min read · NFL/Football
Jalen Carter, Will Anderson and Bryce Young

Steve LimentaniI/SI Photos | Sports Illustrated | Alika Jenner/Getty Images

Another NFL season has come and gone, and before we begin what should be a frantic period of free agency, scouts and coaches across the league will get their first look at some promising youngsters at this year’s combine.
In total, 319 players received invitations to attend the combine in Indianapolis from February 28- March 6.
Here is a look at the top 10 players to watch ahead of that busy week and what they might bring to the table in the NFL.
10. Myles Murphy- Defensive Lineman- Clemson
Murphy has tremendous size and athleticism, and is capable of turning speed into power, making him a handful to contain along the line of scrimmage.
He is one of several Tigers who might be selected in the opening round of this year’s draft thanks to his consistency in college and production, with multiple sacks in each of the past three seasons, along with a forced fumble each year and numerous solo tackles.
9. Dalton Kincaid- Tight End- Utah
A First-team All-Pac-12 in 2022, Kincaid is being called a more explosive version of Eagles tight end Zach Ertz, with blazing speed and perhaps the best hands in college football at his position.
Last season the 23-year-old had more receptions than any tight end in Division 1 (70) while finishing second in yards (890) and touchdowns (eight) for players at his position.
8. Keon White- Defensive Lineman- Georgia Tech
White is quick to locate the ball, capable of making plays against the run with a lethal spin move whose pure speed can close quickly.
As a freshman in 2019, he had 43 tackles, and 36 stops plus 27 quarterback hurries at Old Dominion before transferring to Georgia Tech, where he’s coming off the best sack total of his college career, registering 7.5 in 2022.
7. Tyree Wilson- Edge- Texas Tech
Wilson looks to have the perfect physicality needed to make the jump to the NFL, with an outstanding ability to tackle and tremendous athleticism to chase plays down from the backside, all complimenting his significant leverage to create a pile.
As a senior in 2022, he logged playing time in 10 games for 538 snaps, hurrying the quarterback 32 times while making 32 stops and registering an impressive eight sacks.
6. Peter Skoronski- Offensive Tackle- Northwestern
Out of high school, he was considered a number three center, but he showed versatility in college, moving to left guard and becoming Northwestern’s first-ever unanimous All-American this season.
His grandfather Bob was a Green Bay Packers Hall of Famer under the legendary Vince Lombardi, and this 315-pounder has been a part of the first-team All-Big Ten in the past two seasons and given his hype could be an NFL mainstay in the years to come.
5. Devon Witherspoon- Cornerback- Illinois
Weighing in at 180 pounds, he is one of the slimmer cornerbacks we have witnessed, but despite not having as much meat on his bones, he showed he is more than capable of defending some of the NCAA’s speediest receivers.
He had 41 tackles last season, along with three picks while also breaking up 14 passes, all of which helped him become a consensus All-American while also being named the Tatum-Woodson Defensive Back of the Year in 2022.
4. Bijan Robinson- Running Back- Texas
As a unanimous All-American and Doak Walker Award winner this year, Robinson is probably the most well-rounded running back prospect available in this year’s draft with great size and body control who might be the most promising back since Saquon Barkley.
The 21-year-old Longhorn has been a standout ever since coming to the University of Texas, helping them capture the Alamo Bowl in 2020, winning MVP along the way, and last season was his best statistically on the ground, racking up 1,580 yards.
3. Bryce Young- Quarterback- Alabama
The Psychology major and 2021 Heisman Trophy winner has shown throughout his career with the Crimson Tide that he is a big-game performer, capturing the MVP award in the Sugar Bowl this year thanks to his excellent mobility and ability to get the ball out quickly, making his share of highlight-reel plays off-script.
In two seasons behind center under Nick Saban, Young has a record of 23-4, averaging just under nine yards per throw during that time, while being named the AP’s College Football Player of the Year in 2021, one of many individual awards for the 21-year-old native of Philly in the NCAA.
2. Will Anderson- Linebacker- Alabama
In three seasons at Alabama, Anderson has terrorized opposing QBs posting 34.5 sacks while showing tremendous quickness to rush the passer.
Barring an epic collapse at the combine or a devastating injury between now and April 27, he will be a top-10 selection in the NFL Draft, constantly drawing double-teams but still being named a unanimous All-American in 2021 and 2022 in addition to leading the nation in tackles for losses a year ago.
1. Jalen Carter- Defensive Tackle- Georgia
Impactful interior linemen are a dime a dozen these days, but Jalen Carter could have a Travon Walker-like rise up the NFL Draft rankings, as this two-time national champion with the Bulldogs anchored their defensive unit in 2022 and has shown strength and versatility throughout his college career.
His statistics don’t exactly jump off the page (six sacks, 16.5 tackles for losses in two years), but when he’s healthy, he’s tough to stop, firing off the ball and showing incredible strength to push blockers backwards.
Sports Tree Profile

By: Joel Lefevre

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