NFL Draft by the Numbers

May 1, 2023 by Staff

The 2023 NFL Draft is in the books. In all, 259 players were selected with Alabama quarterback Bryce Young going first and Toledo defensive lineman Desjuan Johnson becoming this year's "Mr. Irrelevant".

In reality, the final pick in the draft has become quite relevant in recent years. Especially with last season's final pick, quarterback Brock Purdy out of Iowa State, starting 8 NFL games and going 7-1 while helping to lead the San Francisco 49ers to the NFL championship game.

Kansas City emerged from the draft as odds-on favorites to repeat as Super Bowl champions at +600, while last year's runner-up Philadelphia Eagles are +850. The Baltimore Ravens, after finally signing Lamar Jackson, have the 8th-best odds at +1800.

The SEC had 31 players taken in the first three rounds and finished with 62 to lead all conferences for the 17 straight year.

2023 NFL Draft Numbers By Conference

62 SEC
55 Big Ten
32 ACC
30 Big 12
27 Pac-12
10 AAC
10 FCS (2 MVFC, and 1 each ASUN, Big Sky, CAA, Ivy, NEC, OVC, SWAC, WAC)
9 Sun Belt
7 Independents (Notre Dame-3, BYU-3, Liberty-1)
5 Mountain West
2 D2 (1 each Great Lakes (GLAIC), South Atlantic (SAC)


The Big 12 was the only conference in which at least half of its teams had a first round selection. Texas Tech OLB Tyree Wilson was the first conference player off the board when the Raiders took him at No. 7. The very next pick was the Falcons' selection of Texas RB Bijan Robinson.

Iowa State defensive lineman Will McDonald IV was selected by the Jets at No. 15, followed by Texas Christian wide receiver Quentin Johnston at No. 21 by the Chargers.

A little later, the Jaguars called Oklahoma offensive tackle Anton Harrison's name at No. 27, and Kansas State outside linebacker Felix Anudike-Uzomah wrapped up the Big 12 first-rounders at No. 31 when he was chosen by the Chiefs.

The Big 12 has four teams entering the conference this year, and three of those four combined to have 10 more players drafted. Houston had 4 while BYU and Cincinnati had 3 apiece. UCF had none.

As for which teams led the draft by number of players selected, we have to go back to the SEC where Alabama and Georgia tied for the most with 10 picks each.

The Crimson Tide had three players go in the first round with Young at No. 1, linebacker Will Anderson, Jr. at No. 3 and running back Jahmyr Gibbs at No. 12

Georgia and Ohio State also had three first rounders with the Bulldogs going at Nos.9, 14 and 30 while the Buckeyes went at Nos. 2, 6 and 20.

The B1G was second in total draft picks taken (55) for the fifth straight year. In addition to the three Buckeyes, the conference also had first-round picks from Iowa (2), Illinois, Northwestern, Maryland and Michigan.

Michigan led all Big Ten schools with 9 players drafted, TCU led the Big 12 with 8, while Clemson and Pitt paced the ACC with 6 each.

Oregon and the most players drafted from the PAC-12 with 6, Houston topped the American with 4, and Old Dominion had 3 of the Sun Belt's total 9 players taken.

Eastern Michigan (with 2) was the only MAC school with more than 1 player drafted, and Boise State matched that accomplishment in the Mountain West.

Wingate (South Atlantic) and Northern Michigan (Great Lakes) are the only D2 schools to have a player drafted while 10 FCS programs had one apiece - North Dakota State, South Dakota State, Sacramento State, Stephen F. Austin, William & Mary, Princeton, Wagner, Kennesaw State, UT-Martin, and Jackson State.

Among the nation's major independents, Notre Dame and BYU each saw three players get drafted while Liberty had one.

A trio of CUSA schools had 1 each - Western Kentucky, Charlotte and UAB.

The 2023 NFL Draft saw three quarterbacks selected in the first round and all went within the first four picks as Ohio State's CJ Stroud at No. 2 over-all, and Florida;s Anthony Richardson at No. 4, joined top pick Young.

If you were an offensive lineman, you had better been a tackle as five of those went in the first round, while no centers or guards were selected . And the only tight end was Utah's Dalton Kincaid at No. 25 to Buffalo.

Pick Team Player POS College
6. Arizona (from LAR via DET) Paris Johnson Jr. OT Ohio State
10. Chicago(from NO through PHI) Darnell Wright OT Tennessee
11. Tennessee Peter Skoronski OT Northwestern
14. Pittsburgh (from NE) Broderick Jones OT Georgia
27. Jacksonville (from BUF) Anton Harrison OT Oklahoma

The defensive line and linebacker positions were in heavy demand in the first round.

Pick Team Player POS College
3. Houston (from AZ) Will Anderson Jr. LB Alabama
7. Las Vegas Tyree Wilson DE Texas Tech
9. Philadelphia (from CAR through CHI) Jalen Carter DT Georgia
13. Green Bay (from NYJ) Lukas Van Ness DE Iowa
15. New York (from GB) Will McDonald IV LB Iowa State
18. Detroit Jack Campbell LB Iowa
19. Tampa Bay Calijah Kancey DT Pittsburgh
26. Dallas Mazi Smith DT Michigan
28. Cincinnati Myles Murphy DE Clemson
29. New Orleans (from SF through MIA and DEN) Bryan Bresee DT Clemson
30. Philadelphia Nolan Smith LB Georgia
31. Kansas City Felix Anudike-Uzomah DE Kansas State

Four cornerbacks were among the first 24 players off the board.

Pick Team Player POS College
5. Seattle (from DEN) Devon Witherspoon CB Illinois
16. Washington Emmanuel Forbes CB Mississippi State
17. New England (from PIT) Christian Gonzalez CB Oregon
24. New York (from JAX) Deonte Banks CB Maryland

How about this draft oddity - four wide receivers were taken in the first round and they all went in succession with picks 20-23 (21 was forfeited by Miami).

Pick Team Player POS College
20. Seattle Jaxon Smith-Njigba WR Ohio State
21. Miami Forfeited ** **
21. Los Angeles Quentin Johnston WR TCU
22. Baltimore Zay Flowers WR Boston College
23. Minnesota Jordan Addison WR USC


Notre Dame still has the lead in the all-time number of NFL draft picks taken with 525, just ahead of USC's 523.

As one might expect, Alabama leads SEC schools with 401 to tie for 5th all-time with Michigan.