2023 NFL Draft: College Game Recaps - Week 13

This section breaks down many college football games each week and highlights how 2023 NFL Draft Prospects have performed.

By Charlie Campbell.
Send Charlie an e-mail here: draftcampbell@gmail.com
Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell for updates.

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  • This Iron Bowl was likely Alabama quarterback Bryce Young's final college football game. With two losses, the Crimson Tide are most likely not going to get into the College Football Playoff, and Young will probably sit out a meaningless bowl game. Young went out in style though, dominating rival Auburn.

    In the first quarter, Young climbed the pocket and lofted in a well-placed pass for a 52-yard strike to Jermaine Burton. A few plays later, Young scrambled for a five-yard touchdown run. On the next possession, Young had a swing pass go for a touchdown run. Later in the second quarter, Young tossed a 32-yard touchdown strike with a pass to the front of the end zone, which JaCorey Brooks was able to leap for and grab to reel in the score.

    Young led another scoring drive after halftime with some precision passes and then took off on a run of about 20 yards. The drive ended with a short rushing touchdown that opened up a huge lead over the Tigers. In the fourth quarter, Young threw a pass off the mark, which an Auburn linebacker came up with via a diving interception. Young completed 20-of-30 passes against Auburn for 343 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.

    As a passer, Young is superb and very advanced. He has excellent instincts and feel, alongside impressive intelligence. Young seems to know where all his receivers and check-down options will be, which makes him very dangerous in terms of working all levels of the field. Young is an accurate signal-caller who will lace some beautiful passes into tight windows to beat good coverage. With timing and precision, Young does a superb job of hitting his receivers on the run and leading them to rack up lots of yards after the catch. Many college quarterbacks don't possess the same confidence Young shows to throw into tight windows, much less have the skill to do it. Young is an astute and dangerous quarterback who can distribute the ball to rip up a defense.

    While Young is looking to pass the ball, he is a good athlete who offers mobility and escapability. He does a nice job of climbing the pocket, keeping his eyes downfield while getting pressured, and throws well on the run. The only concern about Young is his size, as that raises the question if he can avoid injury in the NFL. Some team will be willing to take that chance, however. Young is worthy of being a high first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft and looks like a future franchise quarterback.

  • Similar to Young, Alabama edge rusher Will Anderson was most likely playing in his final college football game. It would be a surprise if Anderson took the injury risk of playing in a meaningless bowl game.

    In the early going, Anderson was putting heat on the quarterback. On one rush, he forced a third-down incompletion. Anderson was generally stout in the ground game and came close to some sacks. Late the fourth quarter, he bull rushed the left tackle back into the quarterback before disengaging to notch the sack as the signal-caller stepped up.

    Anderson has NFL potential as an edge rusher similar to Tampa Bay's Shaq Barrett. Like Barrett, Anderson lacks elite speed, athleticism, strength and explosion. But also like Barrett, Anderson is a natural quarterback hunter who has superb instincts and just knows how to get after the trigger man. Anderson looks poised to be a top-10 pick next April in the 2023 NFL Draft. How high he goes will depend largely on team needs.

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  • Clemson defensive end Myles Murphy could be a first-round pick this coming April in the 2023 NFL Draft, but this performance against the Gamecocks won't help him significantly. He had some nice rushes and showed strength to push into the pocket, but he did not make splash plays, particularly when the game was on the line. NFL team sources criticize what they see as a lack of fire and intensity with Murphy, those aspects were visible in this contest. Perhaps he was protecting himself in what could be his final collegiate game. While Murphy avoided injury, the lack of big plays won't help him with NFL evaluators.

  • South Carolina cornerback Cam Smith is a potential first-round pick for the 2023 NFL Draft, but he had a mixed outing. Midway through the second quarter, Smith was in zone coverage and released receiver Antonio Williams to run by him, but there was a miscommunication with the safety, who did not come over to cover Williams. That allowed Williams to end up wide open deep in the end zone for an 11-yard score. Who is to blame for the whiff on the coverage, however, is impossible to ascertain without knowing the scheme assignment

    Smith was challenged deep downfield n the second quarter, and despite the receiver having a step on him, Smith recovered to slap the ball out for an incompletion. Across the rest of the game, Smith played well, providing tight coverage and helping to force incompletions. Tigers quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei completed only 8-of-29 passes for 99 yards, a touchdown and an interception against South Carolina, in part thanks to great coverage led by Smith.

    For the NFL, Smith projects as a man-coverage corner who is gritty, physical and instinctive. He also has long arms and covers up receivers well. However, Smith is too inclined to grab at wideouts, which could lead to penalty issues as a pro. He also lacks explosion in short areas to a degree, so he is not a great fit for zone. Smith would fit better in a predominantly man scheme at the next level. He looks like a mid- to late first-rounder for the 2023 NFL Draft.

  • Gamecocks quarterback Spencer Rattler has a good skill set, including a strong arm and running ability. A week earlier, Rattler led a blow out of Tennessee, but his streakiness showed up again versus Clemson.

    Early in the first quarter, Rattler threw a pick-six to Tigers linebacker Jeremiah Trotter. Trotter read the eyes of Rattler, who stared down his receiver in the slot, allowing Trotter to jump the route for the interception. Trotter than took that pick back a short distance for a score.

    Rattler came back to throw a short touchdown pass, and then he scored on a nice run after scrambling away from the pass rush. Shortly later from the one-yard line, however, Rattler showed terrible field vision, with a defender dropping into coverage to double Rattler's target, and the linebacker easily intercepted him in the end zone.

    In the third quarter, Rattler rolled out of the pocket and lofted a bomb deep down the field for a 72-yard touchdown. He finished the day against Clemson having completed 25-of-39 passes for 360 yards, two scores and two interceptions.

    Rattler should return to South Carolina for 2023. He has physical talent as a passer, but his accuracy is streaky and his decision-making and field vision need work for the next level. If Rattler can grow more consistent, he could be a fast and high senior-year riser, similar to what Kenny Pickett did with the Pittsburgh Panthers.

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  • Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud is in the running to be the top quarterback prospect for the 2023 NFL Draft, but he ended up having an anti-climatic ending to his collegiate career. By beating Ohio State, Michigan will advance to the Big Ten conference championship and probably deny the Buckeyes a spot in the college football playoff. It would be surprising if Stroud did not skip a meaningless bowl game to start prepping for the 2023 NFL Draft.

    On the opening drive, Stroud made perfect back-shoulder throw to Marvin Harrison Jr. to convert a third-and-1. On third-and-goal, Stroud tossed a short touchdown pass to Emeka Ebuka, leading him open to the back of the end zone to get space from Michigan's close coverage.

    Down by four late in the second quarter, Stroud put Ohio State in the lead by lofting in a perfect 32-yard touchdown pass to Harrison. It was a tremendous throw from the far hash to the sideline with the ball dropping in just past the cornerback for the score.

    Stroud played well, but Michigan's defense did a nice job of limiting big plays to keep him from going crazy. That was until early in the fourth quarter when he hit Ebuka down the deep middle of the field for a gain of 44 yards. That play produced a field goal to make it a one-score game midway through the fourth quarter.

    Stroud drove the Buckeyes into Wolverines territory on the next possession, but he committed a big mistake that helped clinch Michigan's win. Stroud was trying to avoid a sack, and while being tackled, he shovel passed the ball forward. It was off the mark, and his receiver tipped the ball up into an interception for the Wolverines. Ohio State's next possession had the same result as a receiver allowed a pass to tip off his hands and a defender caught the ball for a pick. The pass had been slightly overthrown, but it was not a particularly terrible ball on Stroud's part. He completed 31-of-48 passes against Michigan for 349 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions.

    Versus the Wolverines, Stroud threw the ball accurately and utilized excellent placement to beat tight coverage. On top of his accuracy, he did a nice job of hitting his receivers on the run to lead them for yards after the catch. Stroud showed developed field vision to work through his progressions and read coverage. This game was impressive because he threw into a lot of tight windows and made some brilliant passes. In other games, Stroud's receivers gpt so wide open he had easy passes, but versus the Wolverines, Stroud burned the defense even when there was tight coverage. Both of his interceptions were bad luck on tipped passes and really not terrible plays on his part. Overall, this tape is probably going to help Stroud to end up as a high first-round pick next April in the 2023 NFL Draft.

  • Michigan senior wide receiver Cornelius Johnson has not had a big season, having entered this game with 300 yards and four touchdowns over 25 receptions. He showed big-play ability, hoewver, versus the Buckeyes. On a 69-yard score, Johnson ran a short comeback route befor he spinning away from a tackler and racing down the sideline for the end zone. Shortly later Johnson had one-on-one coverage with a safety and ran past him on a deep post to get wide open for the 75-yard touchdown.

    In the third quarter, Johnson had a step running a deep post, but he was interfered with by safety Lathan Ransom, which drew pass interference. If quarterback J.J. McCarthy had thrown the ball, sooner a catch could have gone for another touchdown of about 60 yards. Johnson made just four receptions against Ohio State, but he amassed 160 yards and two touchdowns.

    The 6-foot-3, 208-pound Johnson has excellent size, and he showed impressive speed for a big receiver versus the Buckeyes. On both of his long touchdowns, Johnson ran away from the defense and was not close to being caught from behind. While he is not going to finish with a big statistical season, he possesses intriguing potential and is a player to monitor in the pre-draft workouts because he could rise.

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  • Kentucky quarterback Will Levis is the consensus third-rated quarterback prospect for the 2023 NFL Draft, behind Ohio State's C.J. Stroud Alabama's Bryce Young. Levis has struggled somewhat this season, but in this final home game he led the Wildcats to this win over in-state rival Louisville.

    In the first quarter, Levis hit a slant for a short touchdown pass, but he also displayed some accuracy issues, missing completions on open receivers. Midway through the third quarter, Levis threw a short touchdown with a well-placed fade ball to the back corner of the end zone. Levis finished the day against Louisville going 11-of-19 for 188 yards and two touchdowns. Overall, this tape will not help his draft grade.

    Levis has an excellent skill set for the NFL, posessing a cannon for an arm, good size, running ability, and toughness. However, he has major problems with interceptions and ball security. In many games this year, Levis consistently created problems from holding the ball too long. In both the good and bad, Levis is reminiscent of Jameis Winston. Levis has a good shot to be a first-round pick this April in the 2023 NFL Draft, but he needs to improve significantly on ball security and decision making for the next level.

  • Louisville quarterback Malik Cunningham had a superb 2021 season, but he has been banged up through the 2022 season, and injuries led to him not getting the start versus Kentucky. With the Louisville offense doing nothing, Cunningham came into the game in the second quarter. He energized the Cardinals, helping to get them down the field and then darting into the end zone on a six-yard run.

    In the third quarter, Cunningham did not see a linebacker dropping into coverage, which led to an interception. After that pass, Louisville went back to Brock Domann. Cunningham completed 3-of-6 passes for 16 yards and an interception, but he did pick up that rushing touchdown.

    Cunningham is a potential mid-round or third-day pick who could be an intriguing backup because he offers dual-threat ability. Cunningham could be a Tyler Huntley-type backup to start out his career with upside to be more than that depending on how he develops.

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    Texas Tech 0 23 15 10 3 51
    Oklahoma 14 10 7 17 0 48

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  • Florida State quarterback Jordan Travis has improved immensely in 2022, but he still has additional room for improvement in 2023. Travis was a dynamic runner against the Gators, but he had some issues with accuracy. Travis should return for his senior year to continue to improve rather than entering the 2023 NFL Draft.

    In the first quarter, Travis threw a floating pass that should have been an easy interception, but it was dropped by safety Trey Dean in what could have been a 60-yard pick-six because there was nothing but green grass in front of Dean. Travis came back to loft in a pretty 25-yard completion to Johnny Wilson with a placed ball downfield to the 6-foot-7 receiver. To finish that drive, Travis took off on a touchdown run from about 25 yards out, showing his speed and cutting ability.

    Travis made an incredible play in the second quarter, dodging three defenders in the backfield, another in the flat, and then running for 10 yards to get to the one-yard line. On the next play, he scooted into the end zone for a one-yard rushing touchdown.

    Midway through the third quarter, Travis lofted in a nice pass for a 44-yard gain. He then closed out that drive by dodging a sack and then took off on a 12-yard run to the one-yard line. That set up a rushing touchdown, and on the following, Seminoles possession Travis threw an easy touchdown pass on a roll out to a wide-open receiver. However, early in the fourth quarter, Travis had a receiver running wide open down the seam, but he overthrew him on what could have been a 75-yard touchdown. Travis finished completing only 13-of-30 passes for 270 yards and a touchdown. He ran for 83 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.

    Travis has a quality arm capable of pushing the ball downfield. With his athleticism, agility and speed, he is a running threat who is tough to sack and hard for a defense to contain. He needs to return for senior year and improve his accuracy on routine throws and ball placement while also speeding up his football process. Travis needs to get better at reading coverage and at working through his progressions. If Travis improves as much in 2023 as he did in 2022, he could be a viable prospect for the 2024 NFL Draft.

  • Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson has been a feast-or-famine player this season. He was superb against Utah in Week 1 and threw for over 400 yards against Tennessee. Richardson was simply awful against Kentucky, losing the game for Florida, and he also struggled mightily versus USF and Georgia - among others. Versus the Seminoles, Richardson flashed some big plays, but overall, he was inept as a passer, displaying terrible accuracy on routine throws.

    Early in the first quarter, Richardson found wide receiver Ricky Pearsall running wide open deep down the field and lofted in a beauty about 50 yards downfield for a 52-yard touchdown. However shortly later, Richardson suffered a leg injury on a quarterback run and had to leave the game. After missing a few plays on the same drive, Richardson returned to the field, and he tossed an easy 12-yard touchdown to wide-open tight end Jonathan Odom.

    Richardson opened the second quarter by shuffling to his left and then throwing a terrible pass short of his receiver for an easy interception. It was a horrible ball, because the receiver was covered and Richardson did not have his feet set. He could have chosen to run for yardage on the play as well.

    Richardson bounced back on the next drive. Pearsall got open running a go route down the seam, and Richardson lofted in a perfect pass for a 48-yard touchdown. However aside from those big plays, Richardson was consistently off the mark and showed terrible accuracy on short to intermediate passes. He went over the half the game with a streak of incompletions that stretched to a dozen before he hit another pass.

    Late in the third quarter, Richardson put up a tremendous 15-yard run, pushing the pile with his strength for seven more yards and a first down. He completed only nine of his 27 pass attempts against the Seminoles for 198 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.

    Overall, there is no doubt that Richardson should return to Florida and continue to develop before going pro. He has a tremendous skill set with a cannon for an arm, size, toughness, and running ability. However, Richardson needs to improve his accuracy and pocket-passing ability by leaps and bounds to be a viable starter for the next level. His inaccuracy in the short to intermediate part of the field is incredible. He also throws too many fastballs and needs to take something off a lot of passes to make the ball more catchable for his receivers. Along with his passing accuracy, Richardson needs to show more progress in his field vision and at working through progressions. He still has a long way to go for the NFL in those regards. Along with his inconsistency, Richardson has confidence issues and needs to demonstrate more poise.

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  • Notre Dame defensive end Isaiah Foskey looks like a future first-round pick for the 2023 NFL Draft, and this tape will help him in that endeavor. In the first quarter, Foskey hustled downfield and tackled USC wide receiver Jordan Addison from behind while punching the ball out. That was a phenomenal play by Foskey that displayed hustle, instinctiveness and superb speed for a defensive end. The referees, however, blew the review and took the fumble recovery away from Notre Dame. A few plays later, Foskey shed the left tackle by using strong hands and chased down Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams for a sack.

    What makes Foskey such a dangerous edge rusher is his good skill set alongside his excellent hand usage. He has a strong upper body that he combines with his forceful hands to rip blockers off of him and break free. Foskey skillfully uses his hands and feet at the same time as well to continue to move up field while freeing himself from blockers. Foskey has speed to close, enough agility to contort his body to redirect, yet is solid in the ground game. He looks destined to be picked on the opening night of the 2023 NFL Draft.

  • This was either the penultimate or final collegiate game for Notre Dame tight end Michael Mayer. Perhaps he will play in the team's bowl game, but it would not be surprising if he sits out the meaningless exhibition and starts preparing for the 2023 NFL Draft. If he decides to forego another game, this was an excellent final tape to provide for pro evaluators.

    In the second quarter, Mayer came off the line and ran a go route to the end zone. He then used his size to box out the 5-foot-9 corner to haul in a 22-yard touchdown. Mayer continued to get open throughout the night, and he used his secure hands to make receptions. In garbage time, Mayer went down the seam and got wide open in zone coverage for a 24-yard touchdown. Mayer totaled eight receptions for 98 yards and two touchdowns.

    For the NFL, Mayer looks like a three-down starter who could provide a receiving mismatch at tight end. He runs good routes, has some quickness, and plows ahead hard after the catch. His blocking is only adequate though and could use some improvement. Assuming he stays healthy, Mayer could get late first-round consideration in the 2023 NFL Draft. He should not fall lower than the top half of the second round next April.

  • USC defensive end Tuli Tuipulotu entered this game as one of the nation's leader in sacks. While Tuipulotu did not have a prolific evening, he played well, getting upfield and generating some pressure.

    Tuipulotu is an interesting prospect for the next level, possesing some serious twitch and explosion as a rusher. He can fire his gap and create some disruption with his burst to get behind the line. The 290-pounder is big and carries his weight well. He is listed at 6-foot-4, but he might be more like 6-foot-3. Thus, Tuipulotu is a bit of a tweener in that he lacks the length of defensive end but is a little underweight for defensive tackle. He might be able to add some more weight to play as an every-down defensive tackle in the NFL, and he could potentially fit as a 4-3 defensive tackle or three-technique. In the 2023 NFL Draft, Tuipulotu could end up as a first- or second-round pick.

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  • Stanford quarterback Tanner McKee has emerged as a pro prospect this year, and this will be his final tape for NFL evaluators if he enters the 2023 NFL Draft. If it is, McKee went out well, as he threw accurately, showed off his powerful arm, good size for the pocket, and some ability to read a defense and distribute the ball.

    McKee completed 31-of-40 passes against BYU for 313 yards and a touchdown. His score was a nicely placed pass that he lofted into the sideline of the end zone. For the pros, McKee will need to speed up the process of reading defenses, working through his progressions, and getting the ball out. If he enters the 2023 NFL Draft, he could get late first-round or second-round consideration.

  • BYU quarterback Jaren Hall left this game early following an awkward tackle that seemed to injure his ankle. That was a shame because Hall was playing better and more confidently than earlier in the season.

    Early in the first quarter, Hall took off on a 19-yard touchdown run. Then in the second quarter, he threw a strike about 30 yards down field to an open receiver to notch a 46-yard touchdown. Hall moved the ball with his legs on another possession, and he threw a short touchdown pass on a roll out pass. Before leaving the game in the second half, Hall was doing damage both on the ground and in the air, totaling 69 yards on 11 carries and completing 7-of-11 passes for 93 yards and two touchdowns.

    Hall has some talent as well as a quality arm and mobility, but he should return to BYU for next season. Even though he will be older, he needs to improve his accuracy, field vision, and working through progressions. If Hall were to enter the 2023 NFL Draft, he could have mid-round potential.

  • Other Weeks:

    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 1
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 2
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 3
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 4
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 5
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 6
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 7
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 8
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 9
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 10
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 11
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 12
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Week 13
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - Conference Championships
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - College Playoffs
    2023 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps - National Championship Game


    2023 NFL Mock Draft - March 21

    2024 NFL Mock Draft - Feb. 19

    NFL Power Rankings - Feb. 17

    NFL Picks - Feb. 14

    Fantasy Football Rankings - Sept. 7


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