San Francisco 49ers: Analyzing NFC West draft classes from 2023

2023 NFL Draft Concert Series - Thundercat
2023 NFL Draft Concert Series - Thundercat / Barry Brecheisen/GettyImages
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2023 NFL Draft - Rounds 2-3
2023 NFL Draft - Rounds 2-3 / David Eulitt/GettyImages

Arizona Cardinals

Draft class

  • No. 6: Paris Johnson, Offensive Tackle, Ohio State
  • No. 41: B.J. Ojulari, EDGE, LSU
  • No. 72: Garrett Williams, Cornerback, Syracuse
  • No. 94: Michael Wilson, Wide Receiver, Stanford
  • No. 122: Jon Gaines, Guard, UCLA
  • No. 139: Clayton Tune, Quarterback, Houston
  • No. 168: Owen Pappoe, Linebacker, Auburn
  • No. 180: Kei'Terel Clark, Cornerback, Louisville
  • No. 213: Dante Stills, Defensive Tackle, West Virginia


The Cardinals were one of the big winners of the NFL Draft this year. They received a ransom of picks from the Houston Texans to move down from No. 3 to No. 12 and then leveraged that to get the best left tackle in the class. Peter Skoronski was a better talent but arm length may push him inside to guard in the NFL, so Paris Johnson was the pick as the prototypical blindside protector.

The Cardinals were active in bolstering the defense starting on Day 2. B.J. Ojulari was a solid pick in the second round, while Garrett Williams was a reach as a talented cornerback prospect coming off an ACL tear.

Arizona, however, might have found some steals on Day 3 with Owen Pappoe a great athlete, Kei'Terel Clark a talented nickel corner and Dante Stills capable of being a pass-rushing defensive tackle.

The pick of Stills was especially annoying, as he was one of my late-round steal candidates for the 49ers.

The Cardinals also made sure to address the offense for when quarterback Kyler Murray returns. Michael Wilson was a reach as he's injury prone and slow, but he does have size and is an excellent route runner. Joe Gaines is one of the numerous mid-round picks on a guard who could very well develop into a starter with his upside. They also got an insurance policy at quarterback in Clayton Tune, which makes sense given how last season went.

Next. 49ers roster: Analyzing 2023 UDFA signings and their fit. dark

The Cardinals might still have a weak roster, but they made some astute picks and some potential defensive gamechangers on Day 3 might be the most exciting part of this class. The real rewards will be reaped in 2024 after their big trade back.