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2023 NFL Draft: Start time, how to watch, order and top prospects


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Around 8 p.m. ET on Thursday, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will take the stage at Kansas City’s Union Station to declare the 2023 NFL Draft officially open. The Carolina Panthers, holders of the No. 1 pick, will have 10 minutes to make their selection, and fans across the country will tune in to see where college stars like Bryce Young, Will Anderson and Jaxon Smith-Njigba land.

If you’re new to the NFL Draft or a seasoned veteran wondering how to catch all the action, we’ve got you covered.

When is the NFL Draft?

The 2023 NFL Draft is a three-day event spanning April 27-29. The broadcast of Round 1 will begin at 8 p.m. on Thursday. The draft resumes Friday with coverage of the second and third rounds beginning at 7 p.m. Rounds 4-7 will take place Saturday starting at noon.

How to watch the NFL Draft

All 259 picks made during the seven rounds of the NFL Draft will air on ABC, ESPN and NFL Network. Fans can also stream the draft via fuboTV, Hulu + Live TV, YouTube TV, Sling TV or through the ESPN and NFL apps. Fans without cable or logins to the aforementioned streaming services can catch the broadcast on ABC with a digital antenna that picks up local networks.

Who has the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft?

The Panthers are on the clock first after acquiring the No. 1 pick in a trade with the Bears on March 10. In exchange for the first pick, Chicago received Carolina’s No. 9 and No. 61 picks in 2023, a first-rounder in 2024, a second-round pick in 2025 and wide receiver D.J. Moore (averages of 77.3 receptions and 1,103 yards the past four years).

What is the 2023 NFL Draft order for Round 1?

How many picks are in the NFL Draft?

There are 259 picks over seven rounds.

Under normal circumstances, the draft would have 32 slots and 32 picks in Round 1 given that’s how many teams are in the league. But that’s not the case this year.

The opening night of the 2023 draft will only have 31 picks and 31 slots because the Miami Dolphins forfeited their 2023 first-round pick (No. 21 overall), as well as a third-round pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.

On March 9, the NFL announced 37 compensatory draft selections among 16 teams for the 2023 draft. The compensatory picks are positioned within the third through seventh rounds based on the value of the compensatory free agents lost.

Players to keep an eye on

In addition to Young, C.J. Stroud, Anthony Richardson and Will Levis are considered the top quarterbacks in this draft. Edge rusher Nolan Smith is worth watching out for after an especially impressive performance at the NFL Scouting Combine, and running back Bijan Robinson, who could be a spark plug in any offense, is among the most talented players in the draft class. 

If you’re looking for a deep dive into this year’s class, The Athletic’s Dane Brugler created a full seven-round mock draft and ranked the top 300 prospects. Interested in playing detective? Check out a profile of the most overlooked player in the draft to see if you can uncover the identity of Prospect X.

“There he goes. One of God's own prototypes.

A high-powered mutant of some kind, never even considered for mass production.

Too weird to live, and too rare to die.”

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