2023 NFL Draft Stock – Week 4

This new section highlights which players have improved or worsened their 2023 NFL Draft stock as the draft approaches.

By Charlie Campbell.
Send Charlie an e-mail here: [email protected]
Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell for updates.

2023 NFL Draft Stock Up

Will McDonald, DE, Iowa State
Sources from multiple NFL teams told WalterFootball.com they believe McDonald could be a late first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. “What he does in the rush game is really special,” said an AFC director of player personnel. “He is extremely athletic and fast with a good get-off. He might be a DPR – designated pass rusher – only, but he could be elite at that. He could be a 15-17 sack-per-year guy in the NFL.”

Sources say McDonald is going to need a lot of maintenance and babysitting for being being on time, following a diet, and even paying his bills. However, they feel he is such a natural and special pass rusher that a team is likely to take him late in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft.

Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee
Hooker dominated a pathetic Gators defense, tearing it up with both his arm and his legs. He was aided by the Florida defense consistently blowing coverage and letting receivers run wide open. In the second quarter. Hooker found a slot receiver wide open in busted coverage. and he made an easy pass about 30 yards downfield that ended up being a 70-yard gain. To end the drive, Hooker ran for a short touchdown. Later on a fourth-and-8, Hooker held the ball too long and was strip-sacked after he didn’t feel the pressure closing in on him. However to end the first half, Hooker rolled out and threw a short touchdown to lead a 99-yard scoring drive that gave the Volunteers the lead heading into halftime.

Hooker had an easy touchdown pass on a check down in the third quarter thanks to Florida blowing the coverage. He later showed his athleticism with a 44-yard run, dodging tacklers and weaving his way down the field. Against the Gators, Hooker completed 22-of-28 passes for 349 yards and two touchdowns. On the ground, he ran for 112 yards and a score.

Hooker has the potential to be a mid-round backup quarterback in the 2023 NFL Draft. He has a decent skill set, including the ability to hurt defenses with his arm or legs. Hooker’s play against Florida will help his draft grade.

Sam Hartman, QB, Wake Forest
While taking on a really good opponent in Clemson, Hartman set a Wake Forest record with six touchdown passes. He completed 20-of-29 passes for 337 yards and six scores. For the NFL, Hartman is a gritty passer who challenges defense with accuracy and placement. He puts nice loft under his passes and throws a very catchable ball. Hartman still might be short of a pro starter’s skill set, but he could end up being a solid backup. His performance against Clemson gives proof that he has backup potential for the next level.

D.J. Uiagalelei, QB, Clemson
After Deshaun Watson and Trevor Lawrence won National Championships at Clemson, there were big expectations for D.J. Uiagalelei as the starting quarterback following those two. Uiagalelei had a very disappointing 2021 season, but has been improved in the early going of 2022. He continued that in leading Clemson to a double-overtime win over Wake Forest. Uiagalelei completed 26-of-41 passes for 371 yards and five touchdowns.

Overall, Uiagalelei looks very improved over last fall. He lost weight and looks more athletic in the pocket. Uiagalelei has some streaky accuracy, showing brilliance at times and ugly misses at others. He is worth monitoring to see if he continues to improve and can grow more consistent.

Julius Brents, CB, Kansas State
Team sources say Brents has impressed them this season with his cover skills. He is a tough defender with massive size for a NFL cornerback at 6-foot-3, 202 pounds. Bringing strength and tenacity, Brents is a hard tackler and physical defender. In 2021, he recorded 49 tackles, an interception and two passes defended.

Tyler Davis, DT, Clemson
Bryan Bresee and Myles Murphy get more media attention, but in the close win over Wake Forest, Davis was the best defensive linemen for Clemson, making two huge sacks and causing real disruption at the point of attack. The 6-foot-2, 300-pound Davis is quick at the point of attack, showing a burst to dart past blockers and collapse the pocket. He may lack the height and length to be a first-round candidate for the 2023 NFL Draft, but he is playing well and is sleeper to keep an eye on.

2022 NFL Draft Stock Down

Ainias Smith, WR, Texas A&M
Smith is on the stock down through no fault of his own. Taking on Arkansas, Smith suffered what looked like a serious leg injury that left him on crutches. He was emotional in the aftermath, and his parents were brought to the sideline as he dealt with the ramifications of having a serious injury that likely end his season and will impact his pre-draft process. Hopefully, good news comes out that Smith’s injury is less serious than it seemed and that his recovery is as quick as possible.

Rashard Torrence, S, Florida
Torrence put together an ugly game versus Tennessee. He had a horrible missed tackle on a long run by the Volunteers plus got torched in man coverage on a tight end. Missed tackles have been a problem for Torrence in 2022. This season, Torrence has not provided the big plays that he flashed in 2021. Torrence should probably return for the 2023 season and improve before going to the NFL.

2024 NFL Mock Draft - April 16

NFL Power Rankings - Feb. 22

Fantasy Football Rankings - Feb. 19

NFL Picks - Feb. 12