The 2014 NFL Scouting Combine is over and the landscape of the 2014 NFL draft class is a little more clear. Us in Cincinnati Bengals land had to wait until the last day of the event to watch the guys that most experts predict will be picked by the Cincinnati organization.
Most of the national media guys has one of four guys going to the Bengals: Justin Gilbert, Darqueze Dennard, Jason Verret, or OLB Ryan Shazier. Gilbert and Dennard solidified their top fifteen status this week at the combine so will be off the board at twenty-four. For Verret or Shazier, I feel both are slightly overrated and I wouldn’t spend a first round pick on either.
Verret is the guy that most have going to Cincinnati, and for me Verret just doesn’t pass the eye test at all. He measured out great at the combine with the third fastest forty and top five vertical, but he’s just to small at 5’9″ 189lbs. Verret is already coming off a major shoulder surgery. Jason is a number two nickel-back corner at best, for me that’s a later second or third round pick not a first.
For Ryan Shazier I don’t even have to look at his tape or watch his combine workouts to know he is not needed. The Bengals are good at outside linebacker, but could use an inside linebacker. Shazier just isn’t big enough to fill that need. I would try a Max Bullough in the later rounds, or C.J. Mosley in the first. Bullough anchored the best defense in college at Michigan State, and Mosley did the same for Bama.