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2023 NFL Draft order: First 18 picks of the draft are set, Giants currently No. 23

The first half of the 2023 draft order is set

NFL: NFL Draft Gary Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The 2022 regular season is over, and the order of the 2023 NFL Draft is now being set. While we don’t yet know where the New York Giants will be drafting, we do know the order of the first 18 picks in the draft.

Having made the playoffs, the Giants could select anywhere from No. 19 to No. 32 depending on playoff outcomes. Based on regular-season winning percentage, they currently have the 23rd overall pick.

The 2023 Draft is primed to be one of the more exciting ones in recent memory, and a few things stand out right away from the initial order of the Top 18 picks. So before we get into why this draft could be so exciting, we really should look at the draft order.

Initial draft order

  1. Chicago Bears (3-14)
  2. Houston Texans (3-13-1)
  3. Arizona Cardinals (4-13)
  4. Indianapolis Colts (4-12-1)
  5. Seattle Seahawks (9-8) - via Denver Broncos (5-12)
  6. Detroit Lions (9-8) - via Los Angeles Rams (5-12)
  7. Las Vegas Raiders (6-11)
  8. Atlanta Falcons (7-10)
  9. Carolina Panthers (7-10)
  10. Philadelphia Eagles (14-3) - via New Orleans Saints (7-10)
  11. Tennessee Titans (7-10)
  12. Houston Texans (3-14) - via Cleveland Browns (7-10)
  13. New York Jets (8-9)
  14. New England Patriots (8-9)
  15. Green Bay Packers (8-9)
  16. Washington Commanders (8-8-1)
  17. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-8)
  18. Detroit Lions (9-8)

Did the Texans’ win reshape the draft?

As far as the draft is concerned, the biggest game of the weekend might have been the match-up between the lowly Texans and Colts. The Texans won that game, dropping them from the first overall pick to the second pick. While that might not seem like much of a drop-off and the Texans would have the ability to select from every prospect who enters the draft save one, it’s potentially significant.

It also gives the Bears a bevy of options based on their evaluation of Justin Fields. If they believe that Fields is their long-term answer at quarterback, they could auction off the first overall pick — and right to draft either Bryce Young or C.J. Stroud — to a QB-needy team. Given the Texans’ obvious need at QB and a new incoming regime, other teams will be motivated to jump them.

If the Bears believe that Stroud or Young offer a higher ceiling than Fields, they can trade their 2021 draftee and pick the quarterback of their preference.

We could see quarterbacks dominate the top of the draft board and multiple teams jockeying for position to draft them. There are a number of potentially QB-needy teams in the top half of the draft, with the Bears, Texans, Colts, Raiders, Panthers, Titans, Packers, and Commanders all potentially interested in selecting a passer early.

The rich getting richer

The other thing that stands out amidst the initial draft order is how many teams at the top of the draft had good seasons.

The Seahawks seem to be set at quarterback after Geno Smith’s fantastic year, and now they can either parlay the Denver Broncos’ pick into a blue-chip player to add to their team, or trade down to accumulate assets. Likewise, the Detroit Lions had one of the NFL’s top offenses with Jared Goff and just missed the playoffs. Their trade to send Matt Stafford to LA netted them the sixth overall pick to go with the 18th pick.

And then there’s the Eagles, who hold the 10th pick in the draft despite having the NFL’s best record. They could potentially draft another receiver to pair with A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith, a cornerback to reinforce their secondary, or a lineman to bolster their depth along the offensive or defensive lines.

Giants fans will have to wait until (at least) 19th overall for the Giants to make their selection. However, the wait until the Giants pick should be entertaining and unpredictable.