The NFC South saw some drastic changes over the past season, with a different starting quarterback expected for every single team compared to the start of the 2022 season. With those changes come some big winners and losers off the back of the draft.
- Round 1, Pick 8 Bijan Robinson, RB Texas
- Round 2, Pick 38 Matthew Bergeron, OT Syracuse
- Round 3, Pick 75 Zach Harrison, EDGE Ohio State
- Round 4, Pick 113 Clark Philips III, CB Utah
- Round 7, Pick 224 DeMarcco Hellams, S Alabama
- Round 7, Pick 225 Jovaughn Gwyn, G South Carolina
Winner – Desmond Ridder
Heading into the draft, there was no certainty that Ridder would be the starting quarterback for the Falcons. However, having not added any competition, we can now confidently say that he will be the starting quarterback for the franchise for the 2023 season. He has a fantastic set of offensive weapons, an above-average offensive line, and an inventive play-caller who has previously pulled fantasy relevancy out of some journeymen quarterbacks. Ridder has some rushing upside in what should be a top-half offense, so it is likely to be fantasy relevant in 2023. If he can perform well, he could secure the starting job long-term.
Loser – Tyler Allgeier
There were a lot of rumors before the draft linking Bijan Robinson to the Falcons. Despite Allgeier having an impressive rookie year from a statistical perspective, the Falcons swung for a significant upgrade at the running back position. This has now relegated Allgeier into a role where for fantasy, he is nothing more than an injury handcuff. It is hard to see a world where he can carve out enough workload alongside Robinson to be useable weekly.
- Round 1, Pick 1 Bryce Young, QB Alabama
- Round 2, Pick 39 Jonathan Mingo, WR Ole Miss
- Round 3, Pick 80 DJ Johnson, EDGE Oregon
- Round 4, Pick 114 Chandler Zavala, G NC State
- Round 5, Pick 145 Jammie Robinson, S Florida State
Winner – Jonathan Mingo
The pre-draft process is an inexact science, but every year we have players who are almost forgotten about in February that end up being drafted highly in April. This year that player was Mingo; he shot up draft boards and ended up being the fifth wide receiver drafted. Mingo lands in a spot where he doesn’t have any elite competition for targets and could find himself the target leader immediately.
Loser – Terrace Marshall
People hoping for a Marshall breakout may finally be able to put that one to bed. He has underwhelmed since being drafted. Now the Panthers spend their second-round pick to draft his replacement. Mingo profiles as an outside X receiver and should eat directly into Marshall’s playing time.
New Orleans Saints
- Round 1, Pick 29 Bryan Bresee, DT Clemson
- Round 2, Pick 40 Isaiah Foskey, EDGE Notre Dame
- Round 3, Pick 71 Kendre Miller, RB TCU
- Round 4, Pick 103 Nick Saldiveri, OT Old Dominion
- Round 4, Pick 127 Jake Haener, QB Fresno State
- Round 5, Pick 146 Jordan Howden, S Minnesota
- Round 6, Pick 195 A.T. Perry, WR Wake Forest
Winner – Rashid Shaheed
The Saints have gone through a significant change on offense this off-season with a new starting quarterback, two new running backs, and multiple changes at tight end. The one place they didn’t make any drastic changes was at wide receiver. The biggest beneficiary of this is Shaheed, who could easily have been replaced but now profiles as the lead slot and deep threat on the team and could have some sneaky fantasy relevancy, particularly in best ball formats.
Loser – Jamaal Williams
When Williams signed with the Saints, he was expected to be a 1b to Kamara’s 1a and be the lead back if Kamara was suspended during any stretch. However, with the drafting of Kendre Miller on day two, Williams will now see significant competition for carries. This could become a muddy backfield to try and predict who is seeing touches on a week-to-week basis.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Round 1, Pick 19 Calijah Kancey, DT Pitt
- Round 2, Pick 48 Cody Mauch, OT North Dakota State
- Round 3, Pick 82 YaYa Diaby, EDGE Louisville
- Round 5, Pick 153 SirVocea Dennis, LB Pittsburgh
- Round 5, Pick 171 Payne Durham, TE Purdue
- Round 6, Pick 181 Josh Hayes, DB Kansas State
- Round 6, Pick 191 Trey Palmer, WR Nebraska
- Round 6, Pick 196 Jose Ramirez, EDGE Eastern Michigan
Winner – Rachaad White
White was one of the plethora of running backs sweating out the team adding competition in the draft. Luckily for him, the Buccaneers went in a different direction. White should now see the bulk of the carries and targets unless they add a veteran-free agent in the coming months.
Loser – Mike Evans/Chris Godwin
The Buccaneers didn’t add any fantasy-relevant players until the fifth round, so no players saw direct competition drafted. However, the lack of a new quarterback means the team is heading into the 2023 season with either Baker Mayfield or Kyle Trask at quarterback. This means that the fantasy upside for Evans and Godwin takes a significant knock moving forward until they find a better and longer-term answer at the position.