Bengals News

Stripe Hype mailbag: Post Bengals draft

tsteffen
STATE COLLEGE, PA - OCTOBER 25: Billy Price #54 of the Ohio State Buckeyes blocks during the game against the Penn State Nittany Lions on October 25, 2014 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
STATE COLLEGE, PA - OCTOBER 25: Billy Price #54 of the Ohio State Buckeyes blocks during the game against the Penn State Nittany Lions on October 25, 2014 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /
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What does Mark Walton bring that Giovani Bernard and Joe Mixon don’t?

Ever since the Bengals drafted Miami running back Mark Walton with their fourth-round pick, there has been the question of why another running back that early in the draft. Cincinnati had Walton high on their board, and when they saw him there after reordering their board for day three, they snatched him up quickly. Day three picks usually are players that still need some work and depth candidates.

When it comes to day three of the draft, taking players just because of the positional need often leads to reaching for a player. These are not draft picks that are likely starting day one. If Cincinnati had elected to go with an offensive lineman just because of the need, they would have gotten a guy that would not have contributed this season.

Walton still has some upside, however. Following Jeremy Hill leaving this offseason for the New England Patriots, there was a spot on the roster needing to be filled. Walton will not only bring another talented running back to the roster, but he fills a need on not only offense but special teams as well. He has been compared to Dion Lewis of the Patriots by some Pro Football Focus analysts as well.

When Walton has the ball in space, he is extremely explosive. He also brings another back with great hands coming out of the backfield for Andy Dalton. While this is not a pick that is a starter day one, there wasn’t going to be a starter at another position right away either. Walton also brings insurance in case Joe Mixon or Giovani Bernard are injured during the season without a significant dropoff.

-Answered by Travis Steffen

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