SMU wide receiver Rashee Rice projects as an early-to-mid-second-round selection in the 2023 NFL Draft. A physically impressive and dynamic athlete, Rashee Rice electrified audiences and NFL scouts to the tune of 96 receptions for 1,355 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2022. Teams looking to add a day-one starting receiver in the second round will identify Rice as a draft-day target.
Here are my four favorite fits in the 2023 NFL Draft for the playmaking Rashee Rice.
The Texans own the second selection in round two (No. 34 overall) and could be in the market for a wide receiver around that range. Veteran wideout Brandin Cooks is expected to be traded this offseason. Without Cooks, Houston’s receiver room is spearheaded by Nico Collins and John Metchie III, who is returning from a battle with Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia (APL).
Texans general manager Nick Caserio has two first-round picks (No. 2 and 12 overall). The first will almost certainly be utilized on a quarterback, with Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud, and Will Levis positioning themselves as favorites. Houston’s second choice could be utilized on a defensive playmaker for new head coach DeMeco Ryans.
Pairing Rice with one of Young, Stroud or Levis would provide the Texans with one of the more ascending quarterback-receiver duos across the league.
New Cardinals head coach Jonathan Gannon has discussed building around franchise quarterback Kyler Murray. Meanwhile, first-year general manager Monti Ossenfort is being tasked with trading No. 1 receiver DeAndre Hopkins this offseason. Hopkins’ inevitable departure will create a need at receiver for the Cardinals.
The Cardinals are slated to pick 35th overall in the second round and could acquire additional day-two selections by trading out of No. 3 overall, not to mention what they’ll acquire for Hopkins. Gannon’s vision for Arizona’s offense is unclear, but Murray has always thrived in spread-based concepts. A spread offense happens to be Rice’s best schematic fit at the next level.
Bills general manager Brandon Beane isn’t entering the offseason with a ton of holes to fill, but wide receiver is one of them. Gabriel Davis failed to meet expectations after being promoted to a full-time role opposite Stefon Diggs. Davis failed to establish himself as Buffalo’s No. 2 receiver. The Bills must continue loading up for their inevitable postseason showdowns with the Cincinnati Bengals and Kansas City Chiefs.
Beane could consider drafting Rice with the 28th overall selection. The Bills may sprint the podium if Rice remains available towards the conclusion of the second round (No. 60 overall). Buffalo is going to draft a receiver fairly early and Rice’s difference-making ball skills and post-catch abilities make him an ideal complement to Diggs.
New Panthers head coach Frank Reich is an offensive-minded leader that’s tasked with revamping Carolina’s offense. The Panthers averaged a 29th-ranked 176.2 passing yards per contest and started three different quarterbacks in 2022. Reich has come on board to steady the ship. New defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero is inheriting an excellent defense. Carolina’s offseason focus must center on improving offensive personnel.
The Panthers are expected to draft one of Young, Stroud, Levis, or Anthony Richardson. Carolina’s young quarterback will need another receiving weapon in addition to D.J. Moore. Reich has run spread-based concepts in previous stops. Rice to the Panthers with the 40th overall selection makes a ton of sense.
Colts 7-Round Mock Draft 2023: March Edition
- Mar 24, 2023
What Are Will Levis’ 4 Best NFL Team Fits?
- Mar 24, 2023