Mel Kiper’s prediction for 2023 first-round pick

ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. has released his first mock draft of the season. With that being said, mock draft season has officially begun.

The New York Giants are coming off their best season in recent history. With Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley leading the charge, the team finished with a 9-7-1 and a third-place finish in the NFC East.

This Giants team ultimately made the playoffs. In the wild card round they took down the Minnesota Vikings. Unfortunately, their season came to an end in the divisional round as they fell to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Throughout the entirety of the Giants season, the weakest point of their offense was the wide receiver position. With season-ending injuries to both Wan’Dale Robinson and Sterling Shepard, poor production from Kenny Golladay, and other issues within the group, this unit played far below expectations. Along with this, several of these players are headed toward free agency. Heading into the offseason many anticipate that this group will be rebuilt in the near future. Mel Kiper Jr. has the same vision.

With the 25th overall pick in the first round of the 2023 NFL draft, Kiper has the Giants selecting USC wide receiver Jordan Addison.

“Here’s another team that took a big jump in 2022, as quarterback Daniel Jones took care of the football and the defense played just well enough to keep the Giants in games. Jones’ breakout came with one of the least impressive wide receiver corps in the league, especially as Kenny Golladay has not lived up to his massive free agent contract. Can general manager Joe Schoen get Jones — a free agent who is likely to return — a No. 1 wideout?” wrote Kiper.

Kiper then added, “Addison put up huge numbers at Pitt in 2021 before dealing with some injuries at USC, and he has the versatility to play outside or in the slot. He just knows how to get open. New York also will get back rookie second-rounder Wan’Dale Robinson, who flashed before tearing an ACL. I like what the Giants are building, but they have to give Jones some help.”

Jordan Addison has been one of the most explosive wide receivers in the nation over the past few seasons. Addison would give the Giants a much-needed weapon on offense. He would also immediately help the group improve.

Addison burst onto the scene during his freshman season in 2020. In his first year, he recorded 60 receptions for 666 receiving yards and four receiving touchdowns.

In 2021, Addison recorded the best outing of his collegiate career. While playing alongside Kenny Pickett at Pitt, he recorded 100 receptions for 1,593 receiving yards and 17 receiving touchdowns.

Following two seasons at Pitt, Addison chose to enter the transfer portal. He then landed at USC with Lincoln Riley and Caleb Williams.

At times, injuries impacted Addison throughout the 2022 season. But when healthy, he was a force through the air. He recorded 59 receptions for 875 receiving yards and eight receiving touchdowns.

If the Giants are looking to rebuild their wide receiver room, a pass-catching duo of Wan’Dale Robinson and Jordan Addison could be the perfect place to start. With breakout pass catcher Isaiah Hodgins still in the mix, this group could have a solid foundation. If the Giants also choose to re-sign both Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton, they could be set heading into 2023.

The real issue could be if Addison is even still on the board when the Giants make their selection.

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