Should The Bengals Draft A Quarterback Late?

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Oct 25, 2014; Pullman, WA, USA; Washington State Cougars quarterback Connor Halliday (12) looks on during a game against the Arizona Wildcats during the second half at Martin Stadium. The Wildcats beat Cougars 59-37. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Bengals have yet to re-sign Jason Campbell, which means they will likely head into the draft with only two quarterbacks under contract: Andy Dalton and A.J. McCarron. Although, a third string quarterback could be found in free agency, should the Bengals instead use a late-round draft pick to select another quarterback? There are two solid prospects that, if available, could prove to be a strong second or third string option. 

Bryce Petty out of Baylor is a solid and fairly accurate quarterback. According to CBS, Petty has a good arm and can be very effective when he finds his rhythm. At 6’3″, 230 pounds, he is not easily brought down. He has a down side though, as he doesn’t typically look off defenders, which would help NFL veterans read passes and react in a timely manner. CBS Sports has him ranked fifth amongst quarterbacks and 117th overall. He is projected to be a fourth round selection.

Connor Halliday, a senior from Washington State, has solid arm strength also. According to CBS, Halliday, at 6’3″, 196 pounds, has an accurate arm to match his adequate arm strength. He is highly confident in his throws and places the ball well on deep post routes. His downside is that virtually all of his snaps came from the shotgun, so lining up under center will be a transition for him.  Also he isn’t elusive when under pressure and he is still recovering from a broken tibia and fibia. CBS ranks Halliday eighth amongst quarterbacks and 218 overall. He is projected to go in the seventh round.

The Bengals have options this season, which includes drafting their third quarterback late in the draft or taking a shot on an undrafted free agent. Although, A.J. McCarron will be available, health issues in 2014 stymied his growth.  It means depth at quarterback should be welcomed.

Next: Bengals Draft Prospects: Landon Collins, S, Alabama

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