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Best bet for first WR selected in 2023 NFL Draft

We break down which wide receiver will be drafted first in the NFL Draft.

Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba (11) runs on the sideline after taking a hard hit during the NCAA football game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Ohio Stadium.  Adam Cairns-USA TODAY Sports

The 2023 NFL Draft is just around the corner as Kansas City plays host to this year’s event from Thursday, April 27 to Saturday, April 29. Conversations surrounding the number one pick, and in particular which quarterback will be taken, continue to dominate the headlines leading up to the event.

There still remains a plethora of intriguing wide receiver prospects in this year’s draft class, but unlike years past there seems to be a consensus that this year’s prospects aren’t particularly strong. Among the wideouts entering the draft, Ohio State’s Jaxon Smith-Njigba, USC’s Jordan Addison, and Boston College’s Zay Flowers headline the group.

The question is which player will go first? Here’s what oddsmakers say. NFL Draft odds courtesy of the DraftKings Sportsbook.


  • Jaxson Smith-Njigba -350
  • Zay Flowers +500
  • Jordan Addison +700
  • Quentin Johnson +1000
  • Jalin Hyatt +3000

*Odds as of April 21

Best bet

While Smith-Njigba seems like a heavy favorite here, I actually like Flowers at +500. The Ohio State product undoubtedly flashed more star potential, but most of his tape came during the 2021 season after a hamstring injury limited him to just three games in 2022. Do NFL GMs potentially care about the discrepancy in games played during that timespan?

Maybe not, but it also leaves the chance that an NFL team opts to go with the more consistent prospect.

Flowers appeared in 11+ games in each of his four seasons at Boston College, and there are a few teams higher up in the first round that appears more set to compete in the short term versus waiting for the future. Among them are the Tennesee Titans, who hold the 11th overall pick, and if they feel a more proven player like Flowers is better suited to pair with franchise running back Derrick Henry, don’t be shocked to see them, or another team, move up early to call his name.