The 2023 NFL Draft was an impressive spectacle, with over 300,000 people attending the event live in Kansas City and more than 50 million people watching it on television, overshadowing the NBA playoffs.
Leading up to April 27, much of the hype focused on the top quarterback prospects, but there was also an abundance of talent on the defensive side of the ball. This was particularly true along the defensive front. Starting with Alabama's Will Anderson Jr. at No. 3, 11 of the 31 first-round picks were edge rushers or defensive linemen.
This significant influx of talent will have a considerable impact on the IDP landscape in 2023 and beyond. To gauge this impact and help fantasy managers make the most of the new talent available to them, the IDP staff at Footballguys has gathered for a series of IDP Roundtables.
First up is a discussion about Anderson and the other edge rushers and defensive linemen.
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Numerous edge rushers and interior linemen were drafted in the first round of the 2023 draft, starting with Will Anderson Jr. to the Houston Texans as the third overall pick. Among the defensive linemen taken on Day 1, who stands out as being in the best situation for IDP success in 2023? Who is your long-term favorite?
Kyle Bellefeuil: I'm reluctant to go with the obvious choice here, but Will Anderson is my answer to both questions. I'm a huge fan of Anderson as a player, and Houston made a significant effort to acquire the talented Alabama pass rusher. Defensive-minded head coach Demeco Ryans will do everything in his power to help Anderson flourish and become the leader of his defense. Anderson should provide solid IDP production from the start as a rookie and is considered a valuable long-term edge asset for dynasty purposes. As for the long-term, I also like Tyree Wilson in Las Vegas. Wilson received top-10 capital (7th overall) and gets to learn and team up with the likes of Maxx Crosby and Chandler Jones, which is advantageous.
Tripp Brebner: Tyree Wilson finds himself in a fantastic situation in Las Vegas. He should fill the third edge-rusher role behind Maxx Crosby and Chandler Jones. He'll learn from one of the best of the past decade in Jones. That's precisely where the opportunity lies for IDP! Jones's best days are behind him, and Wilson will surpass him as quickly as the rookie can adapt to the NFL.
For long-term value, I'm not moving my pre-draft chip away from Myles Murphy. The rookie from Clemson might play all of 2023 in a depth role, but Sam Hubbard is unlikely to develop into a top-flight pass rusher. Murphy needs time to overtake him, but he has the size and play strength to replace Hubbard in the run game and the potential to improve the Bengals' pass rush eventually.
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