2. Bryan Bresee, R-Soph., Clemson, 6-5, 305, 1: Bresee was considered the No. 1 recruit in the nation three years ago. He became the second ACC defensive rookie of the year in school history, joining Dexter Lawrence (2016). He made 64 career tackles, 15 tackles for losses, nine sacks, four pass breakups, an interception, a forced fumble and a safety in 915 snaps. He played in 26 games and made 21 starts for the Tigers.
3. Siaki Ika, Jr., Baylor, 6-3, 358, 1-2: He started his career at LSU and was on its national championship team in 2019. Ika is considered a late first-round to early second-round pick.
4. Mazi Smith, Jr., Michigan, 6-2, 337, 2: Consensus first-team All-Big Ten selection. He started all 14 games at nose tackle in 2022. He made 48 tackles and earned his fourth varsity letter for the Wolverines.
5. Gervon Dexter, So., Florida, 6-6, 312, 2: He started 13 games at tackle last season for the Gators. He finished the season with 55 tackles, four tackles for losses, four hurries, two sacks, an interception and a pass breakup.
1. Myles Murphy, Jr., Clemson, 6-5, 275, 1: Prepped at Hillgrove High in Cobb County. Had 18.5 sacks and 36 tackles for loss over three seasons. Murphy might be a top-10 pick, and he would be a logical fit for the Falcons at No. 8 overall.
2. Tyree Wilson, Sr., Texas Tech, 6-6, 275, 1: Started in 10 games before a season-ending injury against Kansas cut his season short. His injury kept him out of the final two regular-season games as well as the Texas Bowl win over Ole Miss. He made 61 tackles (36 solo), including 14 for a loss and seven sacks.
5. Lukas Van Ness, So., Iowa, 6-4, 275, 1: He was named to the All-Big Ten All-Academic team for the second year in row. Won the school’s Team Hustle award after moving to end from tackle.
4. Isaiah Foskey, Jr., Notre Dame, 6-5, 262, 1-2: He was named a team captain for the 2022 season. He played in 12 games and opted out of the Gator Bowl. He made 45 tackles and had 11 sacks last season.
5. Keion White, Sr., Georgia Tech, 6-5, 280, 1-2: A Tech player hasn’t been selected in the first round since Derrick Morgan (No. 16) and Demaryius Thomas (No. 22) in 2010. White started his career as a tight end at Old Dominion. He’s overcome a severe ankle injury, and he turned some heads with a three-sack performance in the Yellow Jackets’ upset of North Carolina last season.
Best of the rest: Tackles – Southern Cal’s Tuli Tuipulotu, Wisconsin’s Keanu Benton, South Carolina’s Zacch Pickens and Pittsburgh’s Calijah Kancey. Ends – Iowa State’s Will McDonald IV, Michigan’s Mike Morris, Kansas State’s Felix Anudike-Uzomah, Ohio State’s Zach Harrison, Army’s Andre Carter II and Auburn’s Colby Wooden.
Robert Beal, 6-4, 255, Georgia (Peachtree Ridge HS): He played in 37 games and had 72 tackles and 10 sacks.
YaYa Diaby, 6-4, 255 Louisville (North Clayton HS, Georgia Military College): He played in 33 games, had 94 tackles, 19.5 tackles for loss and 10.5 sacks.
Thomas Incoom, Central Michigan (Stone Mountain HS): He played in 25 games and had 85 tackles, 27.5 tackles for loss and 15.5 sacks. Began his college career at Valdosta State.
Isaiah Land, Florida A&M (Grayson HS): He is ESPN draft analyst Jordan Reid’s No. 1 prospect from the HBCU ranks. He was a dominant pass rusher in the SWAC, but likely will have to move to weakside linebacker in the NFL. Led the nation in sacks with 19 and tackles for loss with 25.5 in 2021.
Byron Young, 6-3, 245, Tennessee (Georgia Military College): He had seven sacks and 12 tackles for loss. He had 42 pressures, according to Pro Football Focus. He made a strong showing in a win over Clemson in the Orange Bowl, with three tackles and two sacks.
Teams in need: Bengals, Browns, Lions, Cardinals and Texans.
Need area for Falcons: Yes, the Falcons have added some veterans in free agency, but need some long-term help at end and tackle.
AJC’S 2023 POSITION-BY-POSITION DRAFT SERIES
WIDE RECEIVERS – Past few drafts have spoiled NFL teams looking for wide receivers | Top 10 WRs
RUNNING BACKS – Running backs Bijan Robinson, Jahmyr Gibbs may have to wait to hear their names called | Top 10 RBs
TIGHT ENDS – Notre Dame’s Michael Mayer heads a dee TE class | Top 10 TEs
QUARTERBACKS – Bryce Young’s small stature no longer an issue in the NFL | Top 10 QBs
OFFENSIVE LINE – Skoronski’s short arm length being scrutinized for left tackle | Top 5 C,G, &OTs
DEFENSIVE LINE – Tuesday
LINEBACKERS – Wednesday
CORNERBACKS – Thursday
SAFETIES – Friday
SPECIAL TEAMS – Saturday
The Bow Tie Chronicles