Kentucky QB Levis slides out of draft’s first round

Kentucky quarterback Will Levis, widely expected to be a first-round pick in the 2023 NFL draft, was not picked among the 31 selections made on Thursday night.

ESPN draft analysts Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay both had Levis being selected by the Indianapolis Colts in their final mock drafts. The Colts, however, selected Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson with the No. 4 pick.

Kiper has Levis as his best player remaining on the board.

Levis’ left toe that caused him to miss two games last year was “problematic ” for one team that considered him, ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported Thursday.

Another team believes Levis could manage the injury but thought surgery would need to be discussed after the season, Mortensen reported.

Levis, however, says the “toe has healed” and he is good to go.

Levis was among 17 players invited to attend the first round in Kansas City. Only four of those players didn’t hear their name called — Levis, Alabama defensive back Brian Branch, Penn State cornerback Joey Porter Jr. and Georgia Tech defensive end Keion White.

Levis, who is 6-foot-4 and 229 pounds, has drawn comparisons to Buffalo Bills star Josh Allen with his strong arm and above-average mobility. Levis spent the first two years of his college career at Penn State before transferring to Kentucky as a junior. His production fell off this past season as a senior, when he passed for 2,406 passing yards with 19 touchdowns and 10 interceptions after throwing for 2,826 yards, 24 TDs and 13 interceptions in 2021.

But Levis’ completion percentage was nearly identical — 65.4% as a senior after 66.0% as a junior. He also rushed for nine touchdowns as a junior but managed just two rushing scores last season.

ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez contributed to this report.