The Bengals find themselves searching for an heir to Andy Dalton’s throne. With a unique blend of size and arm strength, Tyree Jackson presents the perfect developmental challenge for Zac Taylor.
Tyree Jackson surprised NFL evaluators when it was announced that he would not return for his senior season at the University of Buffalo, and instead would declare for the NFL Draft. Jackson, who has started a total of 32 games for Buffalo, has enamored some NFL Scouts with his enormous size (6’7) and incredible arm strength, as he is easily able to flick a football 70 yards down the field.
As Cincinnati begins to think about life beyond Andy Dalton, who is currently 31 and will be a free agent in two seasons, they find themselves in the perfect position to take a stab at a day two prospect who offers unique potential among this below-average quarterback class. With a former quarterback coach now leading the organization, the Bengals are in the perfect position to draft a player to sit behind Andy Dalton and learn about the NFL game, as well as work on small things that are vital to becoming an NFL starter, such as mechanics, reading defenses, and adjusting to an NFL lifestyle.
Jackson is by no means a perfect prospect. Any quarterback who is the tallest in his class and who also possesses the strongest arm while being a day two prospect will certainly have their fair share of issues. Jackson has struggled with accuracy throughout his entire career. With a 56.8 career completion percentage and 24 career interceptions, there is obviously some work to be done in the decision-making department.
In a lot of ways, Cincinnati really is the perfect organization to take a stab on a player like Jackson. They have two quarterbacks in front of him who would be far more ready to play if need be. Jeff Driskel didn’t play bad last season (given the circumstances), but his ceiling appears to be a career backup. I believe that Driskel is the perfect player to have in front of Jackson, as he is somebody who can take the hits that Jackson shouldn’t be taking, at least for a season. Jackson would also get to work with a quarterback guru in coach Taylor, somebody who was going through the exact same draft process just 12 years ago. Cincinnati even has the perfect receiving core for a player like Jackson. Green and Boyd provide good size and hands underneath, allowing some misplaced balls to still be catchable. John Ross’ speed combined with Jackson’s cannon would have defenses constantly panicked about the thought of Ross burning them over the top.
Jackson has many flaws, some mechanical and some innate. Nonetheless, Cincinnati would have the opportunity to select him in day two, and they are in the perfect position to attempt a project such as Jackson.
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"Linebacker Solutions Exist for the Bengals in the Draft and Free Agency"