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Horse Tracks: Two Steals and a Reach

Talking about which two teams had steals in the first round and which team reached in the 2023 draft.

NFL: APR 27 2023 Draft Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Steal: Jalen Carter – 9th Pick to the Philadelphia Eagles

When mocks drafts first began, a lot had the unanimous all-American going either first or second overall to the Bears or Texans. The fact that arguably the best defensive player in this year’s draft went ninth overall and also is joining an already elite defense in Philadelphia is a scary sight for years to come in the NFC. Carter will be joining the likes of Fletcher Cox, Hassan Reddick, Josh Sweat, Jordan Davis, Brandon Graham, and Nolan Smith (30th overall in this year’s draft) on the defensive line next year.

Steal: Christian Gonzalez – 17th Pick to the New England Patriots

The Patriots traded back from the 14th pick to the 17th and still managed to get the steal of the draft, Gonzalez. DraftKings Sportsbook had Gonzalez’s line at pick 8.5 and he fell all the way to 17th overall. Like Carter, Gonzalez is also in a great position to succeed, but instead the young corner will be joining a great secondary lead by safety Kyle Dugger and cornerback Marcus Jones, all while being coached by one of the greatest defensive minds in football, Bill Belichick.

2023 NFL Draft - Round 1 Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images

Reach: Jahmyr Gibbs – 12th Pick to the Detroit Lions

This pick continues to confuse me for the Motor City. The Detroit defense was abysmal last year, they traded away cornerback Jeff Okudah to the Falcons, and already have two solid running backs in DeAndre Swift and David Montgomery on the roster, so what was the point of burning the 12th pick on a position that is already filled and not a necessity? It’s simply a want not a need for the Lions. Any defensive player here should have been taken over Gibbs, especially with the defensive talent that was still remaining.

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