Cincinnati Bengals: Why Dre Kirkpatrick Could Be X-Factor In 2013

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Jun 12, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals corner back Dre Kirkpatrick (27) during work outs at mini camp at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

 

 

It’s draft time, so it’s only been a year since we have seen some of the Bengals rookies play. Kevin Zeitler played extremely well and some analysts believe he was one of the better players at his position. Mohamed Sanu came into the receiver position for 5 games, until ultimately ending up lost for the season. However, 3 of those 5 games, Andy Dalton had above a 109% QB rating. Marvin Jones then became the #2 and showed some promise here and there. Vontaze Burfict, although went undrafted, was a very big surprise to the Bengals and has tremendous upside. There’s many other draft picks the Bengals made last year, but it seems many people have been mostly quiet about one guy, Dre Kirkpatrick.

Kirkpatrick was the Bengals first overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft because of the Carson Palmer trade to Oakland. Kirkpatrick was argued as the #2 best CB to come out of the draft last season, and was possibly the most physical. He actually did receiver some game time last season on special teams and defense, but it seems a lot of Bengals fans have already written him off. While some people are looking forward to this draft, they can’t forget that the Bengals are basically getting another 1st rounder in Kirkpatrick.

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  • CincinnatiMike

    The problem is that the diamonds-in-the-rough like Brooks and Simpson and the injury types like JonJoe and Smith seem to hang around just long enough to pocket their rookie contract cash and get past their issues and then move on to big careers elsewhere. The Bengals appear to be a farm team that takes in talent and prepares them for professional football on other teams while absorbing all the costs of their development but not reaping much of the benefit. In fact, JonJoe specifically contributed to ending our postseason. I know we’ve made the playoffs in 3 of the last 4 years but we seem to have peaked. When we lose this talent we don’t go out and replace it like the top teams do (Ravens with Anquan, Pats with Welker, etc.) Instead we start over again and celebrate our eternal youth. If Smith walks, we won’t get Clabo – we’ll draft and start all over again. We will loose the time money and effort that went into training AS, we will literally have wasted a top pick, we will damage the team chemistry and we will damage the development of Dalton, AJ and our running back crew. I am not saying resign AS – I think the problem was drafting him with all his red flags in the first place – but please please have a backup plan that doesn’t set us back 5 years on the RT side of the line. And let’s hope Dre is not another Rivers or another one of the many talented non-factors we’ve drafted.

    It seems to me that even though we have stopped drafting and signing criminals for the most part, we still have an issue with character guys that put the team first. Don’t get me wrong – I think the core group we have is the best quality and most exciting we’ve had since the Kenny Anderson/Boomer days. And it seems to be better than any time since the end of the 80′s. But I am going to withhold judgement until we see if AJ, Atkins, MJ (another project) and other players really stay on after their first contracts and contribute to the team that helped make them.