Draft day: Last minute rumors, predictions and news for opening night of the NFL Draft

2022 NFL Draft - Rounds 2-3
2022 NFL Draft - Rounds 2-3 / David Becker/GettyImages

Tonight is the night. The 2023 NFL Draft opens tonight at 8:00 PM ET, an introduction and slow-burning reveal to the next generation of NFL talent. There will be chaos, confusion, excitement, head-scratching and elation. But most importantly, it's gonna be a lot of fun.

Less than 12 hours away, the Carolina Panthers will be on the clock with the first overall pick of 31 total selections. Here is what we know -- or what we think we know -- heading into tonight's first round of the NFL draft.

"The Seattle Seahawks are the betting favorites to pick Jalen Carter in the NFL Draft"

@nflrums (Twitter)
Jalen Carter
NFL Combine / Stacy Revere/GettyImages

According to most major sportsbooks, the Seattle Seahawks are the favorites to draft Jalen Carter with their fifth overall pick. Seattle has -250 odds to select Carter, the controversial yet dominant defensive tackle out of Georgia. Carter was expected to be a top-three selection before his arrest for reckless driving in Athens, Georgia during the NFL Combine. Seattle has a massive need at defensive line, especially the interior, and Jalen Carter fits that bill.

"That'll put us over the top ... We know (DeAndre Hopkins) wants to be a Buffalo Bill"

Von Miller
DeAndre Hopkins
New England Patriots v Arizona Cardinals / Christian Petersen/GettyImages

It is widely speculated that DeAndre Hopkins will be traded tonight. So far, rumors swirling around his trade have been centered around the Buffalo Bills, Kansas City Chiefs and Baltimore Ravens -- all AFC teams hungry for a big-play wide receiver. Hopkins, who has played for the Arizona Cardinals since being traded in 2020, appears to want out. It appears the Bills are the favorite to land Hopkins if he is in fact dealt tonight, and Von Miller is here for it.

"Bucs are sold on Mayfield vs. Trask for QB1"

Ari Meirov
Baker Mayfield
Los Angeles Rams v Seattle Seahawks / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were expected to go into tonight's draft possibly looking for a quarterback after Tom Brady announced his retirement this off-season. With the 19th pick, Tampa could be in play for a quarterback like Will Levis or Hendon Hooker, but it appears Tampa is content with the quarterbacks they have. The freshly signed Baker Mayfield and Tampa Bay backup Kyle Trask are set to compete for the starting job this season, which is allegedly good enough for the Buccaneers' brass to focus on drafting other positions of need in the first round tonight.

"The consensus is that (Tyree Wilson) has a higher ceiling than the Bama star [Anderson] or any other pass rusher in this year’s draft this side of Jalen Carter."

Albert Breer
Tyree Wilson
Texas v Texas Tech / John E. Moore III/GettyImages

According to Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer, NFL scouts, general managers and coaches are starting to see Texas Tech edge rusher Tyree Wilson as having more potential than Alabama's Will Anderson, who has been the top defensive prospect on most draft boards for months leading up to the draft. It will be interesting to see if this rumors rings true, as the Texans are supposedly passing on a quarterback and will go defense with the second overall pick. It's a toss-up between Will Anderson or Tyree Wilson, but it appears the league views Wilson as the "higher ceiling" prospect.

"The Titans have been active in calling around"

Albert Breer
Mike Vrabel
Tennessee Titans v Philadelphia Eagles / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

The Tennessee Titans, who a lot of insiders believe are looking to trade up for a quarterback, have apparently been active in seeking a trade partner. Breer does mention that some of the calls Tennessee has made have been in regards to trading down, but the Titans did try to make some moves to jump up closer to the top of the draft. Whether the Titans have a specific quarterback in mind, or if they plan on drafting the best player available, keep an eye out on Tennessee to move from the 11th pick -- either up or down.

"Texans have made calls about moving back in round one - and also moving back up"

Adam Schefter
Nick Caserio
NFL Combine / Stacy Revere/GettyImages

The Texans, who hold the second overall pick, appear to be trying to offload that pick to a QB-needy team. After reportedly souring on quarterbacks, especially CJ Stroud, Houston likely wants to cash in their number two pick for additional draft capital. Additionally, the Texans may not like their 12th spot either, allegedly wanting to move up from that one. Perhaps Houston trades back from 2 to 4 with Indianapolis, then trades up from 12 to 8, 9, or 10 to select the best available quarterback, leapfrogging ahead of Tennessee at 11.

"In the words of one GM, "It's the most unpredictable draft in forever.""

Ian Rapoport
Roger Goodell
2022 NFL Draft - Round 1 / Kevin Sabitus/GettyImages

We should honestly take all these rumors and speculations with a grain of salt -- approximately nobody on the planet knows what is going to happen tonight, not even NFL general managers. It is a very unique draft, with only a few sure-fire prospects in the draft, followed by dozens of 'boom or bust' players, who can be anywhere from All-Pro to out of the league in a few years time. With such a top-heavy draft class, it's nearly impossible to figure out what is going to happen. There are only a handful of solid quarterback prospects for a lot of teams needing a quarterback. Aside from the first overall pick, there is no clear consensus to what will happen at the second overall pick, let alone the top five.

There is a reason there is a palpable aura around tonight's NFL Draft. Nobody knows what to expect and it's genuinely exciting. We will be anxious, excited, disappointed, elated, and every other feeling in between. It's what being a sports fan is all about. The wait ends tonight and we finally will see how the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft shakes out tonight at 8:00 ET.