FanSided’s two-round mock draft is dream come true for Commanders

(Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) Joey Porter Jr.
(Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) Joey Porter Jr. /

A recent 2023 NFL mock draft from Brad Weiss of FanSided is nothing short of a dream come true for the Washington Commanders. 

Mock draft season is now in the final furlong as analysts and draft writers across the country start forming their official conclusions before the all-important selection weekend. Some are more accurate than others, but they are always a topic of great debate among fans throughout the evaluation process.

It’s an important draft upcoming for the Washington Commanders. They must continue to build on an encouraging offseason in pursuit of being competitive within the NFC East next time around.

That will be easier said than done given the strength within the division. There is also a heightened sense of urgency for head coach Ron Rivera and other influential figures if the Commanders fall into new ownership hands with two formal bids on the table that reportedly met Dan Snyder’s asking price of $6 billion.

Money is tight right now, to put it mildly. Therefore, the Commanders will be relying on their eight selections during the 2023 NFL Draft to slot into various roles – whether that’s a Day 1 starter, a key rotational piece, or a development project.

Commanders take Joey Porter Jr. and John Michael Schmitz in FanSided mock

Brad Weiss of FanSided recently put together a comprehensive two-round NFL mock draft, which represents a dream come true scenario for the Commanders. It started with Washington taking stud cornerback Joey Porter Jr. at No. 16 overall, who looks every bit like the shutdown presence Jack Del Rio’s defense desperately needs.

"The Washington Commanders have made the commitment to Sam Howell as their starting quarterback in 2023, but have brought in Jacoby Brissett as an insurance policy. On defense, there is still work to do, and with a defensive-minded head coach in Ron Rivera, Joey Porter Jr. would be an excellent pick at No. 15. Porter is an NFL legacy, and based on his skill set, maybe the most NFL-ready defensive prospect in this draft class."

Porter is fast, physical, and isn’t scheme dependent. Adding him to a cornerback room that also consists of Benjamin St-Juste, Kendall Fuller, and the recently acquired Cameron Dantzler Sr. gives the Commanders a potentially productive cornerback foursome that could cope with most dynamic NFL passing attacks.

Washington’s second-round selection at No. 47 overall was eye-catching. One that could provide another immediate solution to a problem area on the offensive line right out of the gate.

Weiss mocked John Michael Schmitz to the Commanders, who is the consensus best center prospect emerging from the college ranks this year. Something that would likely spell the end of Chase Roullier’s injury-hit stint in Washington along the way.

"“John Michael Schmitz is getting a lot of buzz as we inch closer to April’s draft, and some feel he could be a first-round pick. Here, he falls to No. 47, but the Commanders are waiting with open arms as they add a punishing player who will protect their new starting quarterback Sam Howell.”"

Schmitz’s arrival in this scenario should see Nick Gates occupying one of the guard positions following his arrival in free agency. Having the aforementioned duo coupled with Sam Cosmi at the right guard position is a significant upgrade on Washington’s interior protection last season, which would see Charles Leno Jr. and Andrew Wylie cement their status as the team’s starting tackle tandem in 2023.

If the Commanders emerged from their first two selections with two genuine difference-makers in Porter and Schmitz, nobody would complain. It might even provide the primary decision-makers with additional freedom for a gamble or two as the draft progresses.

The time for speculation and rumors will soon be at an end. But one thing that cannot be disputed is how important the draft is for Washington’s hopes of entering the NFC East title picture when competitive games begin once again.

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