The debate over who the top quarterback will be in the 2023 NFL draft has already started. Honestly, it had already started even before the 2022 draft's first pick was announced. Knowing teams have already spent a year in some cases studying the upcoming quarterback class, we decided to ask their opinions of the top players. And the answers might surprise you.
I talked to 12 NFL evaluators and numerous college coaches and studied the 2021 tape of the top draft-eligible quarterbacks for this class to figure out the early QB1 for 2023. As has become commonplace in most draft classes, the order and names listed here could (and should) change as new information becomes available about each player. Some will rise, some will fall and some new names will be introduced throughout the process.
Kenny Pickett was seen as a Day 3 quarterback last year at this time before eventually going No. 20. Before he was the No. 1 overall pick, Baker Mayfield was a Day 3 prospect entering his senior season. And while C.J. Stroud and Bryce Young are the biggest names headed into the season, we can all remember that last year those names were Spencer Rattler (benched at Oklahoma, transferred to South Carolina) and Sam Howell (Round 5 pick).
OK, enough disclaimers. Let's get into this.