Bengals Draft Spotlight: Robert Nkemdiche, DT, Ole Miss

matthewwillson
Aug 28, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Boise State Broncos quarterback Grant Hedrick (9) throws a pass as Mississippi Rebels defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche (5) pressures him in the first quarter of the 2014 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 28, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Boise State Broncos quarterback Grant Hedrick (9) throws a pass as Mississippi Rebels defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche (5) pressures him in the first quarter of the 2014 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Cincinnati Bengals will need to make decisions with the 24th pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. Could they select something other than a wide receiver?

The Cincinnati Bengals are seeing the end of Domata Peko‘s career right before their eyes. The issue is Brandon Thompson and Pat Sims are probably not the answer. This means the Bengals should be looking for his replacement sooner rather than later, especially with their mentality of developing before playing.

Robert Nkemdiche from Ole Miss could be the answer. Everyone has been talking about a wide receiver, and it still could be the pick with the right guy, however, nothing is a guarantee and the Bengals options could be limited late in the first round. Nkemdiche could fit well with his play to stop some strong running backs the Bengals are set to face.

According to his draft profile on NFL.com:

"Exceptional build. Carries no bad weight and has outstanding thickness and power through his rear, thighs and calves. Plus movement skills and runs like a defensive end. Has reactive explosiveness for expanded range as tackler near line of scrimmage. Wrap up finisher who won’t allow running backs out of his grasp. Plays with good lateral quickness and can win the race across the face of blockers. Played stronger at point of attack this year. Proved he could penetrate and 2-gap. Showed noticeable improvement as pass rusher this season. Has a decent spin move as pass rusher and plays with the power to force his way through a guard’s shoulder and into the backfield. Improved quarterback pressures from 13 to 26 this year."

The Bengals can use this against teams like the Steelers, who have one of the more talented running backs in the league, LeVeon Bell. His constant battling almost reminds us of a younger Domata Peko. In 2015, he finished with three sacks, 26 quarterback pressures, and 29 tackles.

The only thing the Bengals might have to work into his rookie contract is banning him from owning a Panther. Nothing like signing your rookie deal and then getting mauled by a large black cat. Nkemdiche may be a risk to bust, but with the right coaches in Paul Guenther and Jacob Burney, he could develop into a solid NFL player.

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