It is no secret that the Longhorns had one of their most disappointing NFL draft showings in school history last week, enough to deem them one of the biggest losers of the three-day event.
For the first time since 2014, not a single Longhorn was selected in the NFL draft which has left many puzzled as to where Texas went wrong and whether it will happen again next year.
On the bright side for Texas fans, at the very minimum there will be one player taken in next year’s draft as star running back Bijan Robinson has had an impressive collegiate career up to this point.
He is not the only Longhorn that has the chance to hear their name called in 2023 NFL draft, as the roster has seen some upgrades this offseason and a handful of players have the talent to assert themselves as legitimate prospects.
Here are Texas’ top 2023 NFL draft prospects ahead of the 2022 college football season.
Roschon Johnson, RB
Even as the backup to Bijan Robinson, Roschon Johnson has a great chance to play his way onto draft boards. He is a powerful runner that can block and catch passes out of the backfield. His biggest hindrance is that his touches are limited due to being a backup, and will really have to maximize the carries he gets. However, while some might see his lack of experience at the position as he came to Texas as a quarterback, he does have the appeal of having less mileage on his body. He may also choose to return after this season and try his luck the following season to fend off Keilan Robinson, Johnathan Brooks, and Jaydon Blue.
Alfred Collins, DL
Will this be the year that Collins puts it all together? He burst onto the scene during the Alamo Bowl a couple years back, and is widely regarded as the best defensive linemen on the team. However, just like the rest of the defensive line last season, his numbers were not great. If he can assert himself as a legitimate pass rusher that can also consistently disrupt the run, he can easily cement himself as a solid draft prospect.
Jordan Whittington, WR
Whittington has put a ton of pressure on himself this season, as he already declared that it will be his last one in Austin. He has shown flashes of being a very talented receiver, but as we all know has been plagued by injuries every season. He has the speed and elusiveness that will catch the eyes of NFL scouts, but really needs to be available for a full season.
Isaiah Neyor, WR
While Texas would likely love to have Neyor for multiple years, he will be eligible for the draft in 2023. He has already shown he can produce at the college level, but making the move to Texas will give him the chance to stand out against better competition. He has great size, speed, and seems to always be on the right end of a 50-50 ball. While it would hurt to lose him, he could very well be a one and done guy that finds himself in the middle rounds or at his ceiling in a Jameson Williams scenario.
DeMarvion Overhsown, LB
Had he entered this year’s draft, Overshown would have likely been drafted in the mid to late rounds. At one point before last season he was viewed as a first round pick, but missed tackles and getting sucked in by the offensive line really hurt his stock. He has the chance to be the biggest riser of this group, but also the biggest faller at the same time. He may go anywhere from late first to the sixth round.
D’Shawn Jamison, CB
D’Shawn Jamison is someone whose draft stock can only go up, as he has the tools to be an NFL cornerback, but he needs to put everything together. He needs to improve his tackling, coverage, and continue to be a productive return man at the very least. Josh Thompson was widely considered the best cornerback on the team last season, and he went undrafted after his season was shortened due to an injury, so Jamison really needs to have a big season to avoid the same.
Jahleel Billingsley, TE
Billingsley is one of the more interesting prospects on the team, as he showed great flashes at Alabama while playing under Sarkisian, but was surpassed on the depth chart this past season. He is a borderline receiver that doubles as a tight end, but needs to improve his consistency as a playmaker. He likely won’t have to block much, as based on reports Ja’Tavion Sanders has emerged at that role, but Billingsley will need to fine tune it a tad to play in the NFL. He is another person whose stock will fluctuate.
Bijan Robinson, RB
Bijan Robinson is widely considered the best running back in the country, and is viewed as the No. 1 running back for the 2023 draft class. He got a little banged up last season, but barring anything serious he will likely be a lock to go in the first or second round depending on if a team will take a running back in the first. It’s not to say he is not a first round talent, but running backs simply just aren’t as valuable in today’s NFL.