7-Round Cincinnati Bengals NFL Mock Draft

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Sep 15, 2012; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Arkansas Razorbacks center Travis Swanson (64) prepares to snap the ball in the game against the Alabama Crimson Tide at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. Alabama defeated Arkansas 52-0. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Round 2: Travis Swanson, C, Arkansas

With Mike Pollak becoming a free agent, the Bengals certainly need offensive line depth. Not only that, but Travis Swanson could be best player available for the offensive line and an improvement over starting cetner, Kyle Cook. While Swanson’s size seems small, he has great feet and uses his hands exceptionally well while blocking.

He shows a great burst off the line of scrimmage and knows how to use his hands to get defenders at bay. His biggest strength is his pass blocking, sliding into the gap quickly and controlling the defender. Swanson excels and helping his teammates finish blocks, as at times defenders skewed away from him because of difficulty.

While excelling in pass blocking, he is also admirable in run blocking. He uses his quick power to get the defender moving and uses it to his advantage. At times, he ends up on the ground on running plays. This is something he will need to get cleaned up in the NFL, but is not too big of a problem as he will work on fundamentals throughout the offseason.

He must continue to keep his feet moving in run blocking, as is why he ends up on the ground. However, once he gets his feet moving, he can go into the second level of the defense and continue to block for his teammates. Not stopping until the whistle, Swanson often times helps out his guards and shows great instincts when he must disengage to help out his teammates in blocks.

Swanson has immense potential and would be a great asset to this offensive line that so badly needs depth. Another benefit is that Swanson also has the ability to play left guard if needed, giving him versatility on the line.

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  • [email protected]

    I would rather see them pick up another D lineman than a OLB, We have a solid LB core. I want to see them go for Aaron Donald from Pitt. A solid guy up front who could replace a Michael Johnson or help if Geno continues to see problems with injuries going forward.

  • Sean Snuff McMahon

    I’m a huge fan on Aaron Donald and think he would be a great player. Heck, he reminds me a lot of Geno Atkins in some ways. I would have taken him in the 2nd round, but believe he will be taken before then. I think the NFL Combine will certainly raise his stock depending on how he does. If he’s there in the 2nd, I’d take him in a heartbeat. Only thing is I don’t see him replacing MJ if he leaves, as he’s too small to be a DE. Could be someone to learn under Peko and put in with pass situations.

  • [email protected]

    I will go on the record to say this, I think by the end of the combine, he could go as high as a low first round pick which is where the Bengals might be picking if they get past San Diego on Sunday. I think he might be worth a closer look for that position. I know both of us have had a great look at him as we are both in Western PA.

  • Sean Snuff McMahon

    Agreed. Donald has a ton of potential and would love him in Cincinnati. Thompson showed signs early in the season, but fell off as the year went on. Sadly, we know where the Bengals fall in the draft, but now it’s time to look at players to take them over the top!

    • [email protected]

      I can’t wait for a Healthy Geno, Newman, and Hall. That will be a major upgrade to start 2014!!! Looking forward to this years draft!!!

      • Sean Snuff McMahon

        Agreed. Kirkpatrick got a lot better with the more snaps he received. This defense has everything you want. Pass rushers, shut down corners, run stopping linebackers, hard-hitting safeties, everything. Can’t wait to see free agency and the draft,