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Throughout Thursday's Round 1 festivities, the camera kept cutting back to Kentucky quarterback Will Levis, who watched as three other quarterbacks and the majority of the Kansas City green room emptied out progressively.
While many did not expect Levis to fall to the second round, his wait is not expected to go on much longer Friday.
NFL Network Insider Tom Pelissero reported Friday morning that teams had been calling others holding late first-round spots to no avail on Thursday night, and now the Pittsburgh Steelers have fielded multiple calls about the No. 32 pick, which opens the second round. Per Pelissero, many of the teams calling on Thursday were believed to be interested in Levis.
NFL Network Insider Mike Garafolo reported late Thursday night that teams were trying to talk to the Kansas City Chiefs about the No. 31 pick, but K.C. was intent on making that pick -- which resulted in the selection of Kansas State edge Felix Anudike-Uzomah.
Philadelphia Eagles general manager Howie Roseman was likewise contacted about the team's No. 30 overall pick, he said in his post-first-round news conference. However, Roseman and Philly were set on a pass rusher of their own and took Georgia's Nolan Smith. While the Eagles and Chiefs stiff-armed late-round trades, as noted by Garafolo, it could pave the way for some trade movement at the top of the second round on Friday.
Here's what else we're monitoring Friday ahead of Rounds 2 and 3 of the 2023 NFL Draft, which kick off tonight at 7 p.m. ET:
- Philadelphia Eagles GM Howie Roseman left Thursday night a very happy man. The Eagles selected Georgia defensive lineman Jalen Carter at No. 9 overall before taking another Bulldogs D-lineman, Nolan Smith, at No. 30. "The Eagles are beyond happy that they were able to land both of these Bulldogs in the first round," NFL Network's James Palmer reported. Per Palmer, Roseman made multiple calls to myriad teams in the days ahead of the draft because he did not believe he'd land Carter staying put at No. 10. In the end, Roseman and the Eagles moved up one spot to No. 9 in a trade with the Chicago Bears to get Carter. As for that 10th spot, they thought they might get Smith there, Palmer added. Instead, they got him all the way at the end of the opening round and have two Bulldogs -- after selecting another former Georgia defensive lineman, Jordan Davis, in last year's first round.
- Sitting at No. 26, the Dallas Cowboys made a somewhat surprising selection on Thursday in Michigan defensive tackle Mazi Smith. One area of need for the 'Boys was a tight end, but the Buffalo Bills jumped right in front of Dallas at No. 25 to take Utah TE Dalton Kincaid, trading up with the Jacksonville Jaguars to do so. Might the Bills have stolen the Cowboys' top choice? Well, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones wasn't tipping his hand even after the fact. "That is tactical with tomorrow ahead of us and the next day ahead of us, so I want to watch what we say here," Jones said Friday night. "Last year, I showed you the damn draft board. I barely got back in the building by training camp. I was barred from the building. So much for that. So, I am not going to give you the draft board this time." If Dallas is looking for a tight end to replace the departed Dalton Schultz, there remains ample opportunity. Kincaid being the only TE taken in the opening round was somewhat surprising, too. Notre Dame's Michael Mayer leads a cast of talented TEs still on the board and the Cowboys' next pick is No. 58. Iowa tight end Sam LaPorta could also be a name to watch, as NFL Network's Jane Slater reports Dallas is high on the Hawkeye, along with TCU guard Steven Avila and running back Kendre Miller.
- The Detroit Lions made one of the more shocking selections Thursday when they took Alabama running back Jahmyr Gibbs with the No. 12 overall pick -- bucking what had been the trend of positional value for tailbacks in the draft. But what does move mean for incumbent starter D'Andre Swift? NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported on NFL Draft Kickoff that the Lions have fielded trade calls and could move on from Swift this weekend. Swift combined for 931 yards and eight touchdowns last season and is on the final year of his rookie contract.
- The Buffalo Bills made moves on Thursday night to get their newest tight end. Initially, the club was slated to pick No. 27 overall until they traded up with the Giants and leaped over the Cowboys to secure another weapon for their offense. With the No. 25 overall pick, the Bills got Utah's Dalton Kincaid and it seems like everyone is happy about it, even Bills linebacker Von Miller. NFL Network's Andrew Siciliano asked Miller what he thought of the pick. "I love it. He was supposed to go way higher than that," Miller said on NFL Network's Draft Kickoff. "You mentioned with Dawson Knox, it'll be crazy with Josh Allen and James Cook and, Stefon Diggs, Gabe Davis. We definitely got better. That was a great pick for us, I'm super excited."
- The Indianapolis Colts got their quarterback of the future by drafting Anthony Richardson at No. 4 overall. Will Levis' slide into Day 2 of the 2023 NFL Draft, however, has Colts owner Jim Irsay thinking of successful formulas from years past. Irsay tweeted Friday asking Colts fans about the possibility of having both Richardson and Levis if the Kentucky QB is still on the board, invoking the idea of the San Francisco's Hall of Fame QB duo of Joe Montana and Steve Young. Indy currently owns second- (No. 35) and third-round (No. 79) picks entering Friday night, and said scenario would cause another wild turn in the ongoing Levis saga.
Of course, Irsay is known to have fun with his tweets, and at the moment a move like adding a second rookie QB through the draft is purely hypothetical. What is concrete for the team heading into Day 2 of the draft is that the Colts have a commitment to building around Richardson. Given the Florida product's freakish athleticism, Indianapolis has the right head coach to mold him into a game-breaking player. Shane Steichen earned his first shot at a head coaching job by crafting a system perfectly-suited for Eagles QB Jalen Hurts in 2021 and 2022 as Philadelphia's offensive coordinator. Speaking on Friday after finally learning his fate the day before, Richardson bought into Steichen doing the same for him. "We all seen what he did with Jalen Hurts," he said, via Fox Sports' Ben Arthur. "They told me we can do similar things like that, and I'm definitely excited for it because I feel like I can perform the same way Jalen did in a type of offense like that."