The 2023 NFL draft is entering the final stretch, but there could be still some late-round gems waiting to be mined.
After two days, plenty of big-name players have already come off the board. But there might be some solid starters still waiting to hear their names called. From prospects with untapped potential to college stars looking to prove they can make the pro transition, there is no shortage of notable figures to keep an eye on as the event begins to wind down.Here are the best players still available entering the final four rounds of the draft on Saturday.
1. Clark Phillips III, CB, Utah
NFL teams shouldn’t overthink this any further. Yes, the 5-foot-9, 184-pounder doesn’t have the ideal build or long speed to match up outside against receivers. But put him in the slot and watch him prosper with his quick-trigger movements and outstanding feel for the position.
2. Kelee Ringo, CB, Georgia
The 6-2, 207-pounder drew plenty of criticism months ago when his name was being thrown around as a potential first-round draft pick. But as a Day 3 selection, his immense physical tools are worth the gamble, even if he needs to be utilized in a pretty specific manner while being given time to develop.
3. Dawand Jones, OT, Ohio State
The 6-8, 374-pounder won’t be a fit for every offense. That’s OK. In the right scheme, he can be a mauling right tackle who can also stonewall edge rushers.
4. Darius Rush, CB, South Carolina
It’s difficult to find 6-2, 198-pound cornerbacks with 4.38-second speed in the 40-yard dash at any point in the draft, let alone on Day 3. Rush’s coverage instincts are still a work in progress, however.
5. Adetomiwa Adebawore, DT/DE, Northwestern
His star turn at the NFL scouting combine only meant so much, as his outstanding athleticism hasn’t quite translated into consistent performance. But moving the 6-2, 282-pounder from the edge to a three-technique role should help him become more disruptive on a down-to-down basis.
6. Chandler Zavala, G, North Carolina State
A stout yet agile blocker, Zavala could be a solid starter for a number of teams. Medical history could be an X-factor, as he underwent back surgery in 2021.
7. Cory Trice Jr., CB, Purdue
Could the 6-3, 206-pounder be the latest supersized athlete to make waves after lasting into Day 3? It’s unfair to expect him to follow Tariq Woolen’s trajectory, but Trice could be a dynamic playmaker with some refinement.
8. Tyler Scott, WR, Cincinnati
Separation isn’t a problem for the 5-10, 177-pounder, as he can easily accelerate past defensive backs as a deep target. He likely will need to bulk up and still be creative in finding ways to beat press coverage.
9. Jake Haener, QB, Fresno State
Of all the remaining quarterbacks on the board, Haener might have the best chance of becoming at least a spot starter or dependable backup. His accuracy, anticipation and processing make him a trustworthy option behind center, even though his suboptimal build (6-0, 207 pounds) and pedestrian arm strength might limit his ceiling.
10. Antonio Johnson, S, Texas A&M
Though his play can be a little wild, Johnson shows intriguing skills when working downhill. His physical tools suggest he could become an asset in coverage with some work, though right now he might be a liability against savvier pass catchers.