How does Cincinnati’s newest draft class impact some established names already on the roster?
As soon as last season ended, pretty much everyone thought that the linebackers, offensive linemen and defensive linemen on the Bengals roster would have some fresh faces to compete with after the draft.
That turned out to be true. However, three offensive skill position players are also probably feeling differently about their future in Cincinnati following the draft.
Andy Dalton– Yes, the Bengals did draft a quarterback in Ryan Finley. Still, the NC State product isn’t starting in place of Dalton anytime soon, unless the former TCU Horned Frog goes down with injury again. The pre draft buzz about Cincinnati taking Dwayne Haskins wouldn’t go away. Thus, Dalton must be relieved. Throw in the fact that the Bengals took one of the best offensive lineman in the draft with their first pick, and Dalton has to be the happiest man in Cincinnati.
John Ross– Right up to and even during the draft, there were conflicting reports about the former first round pick being on the trading block. Ross has only caught 21 total passes in two seasons. However, the only wide receivers the Bengals added are undrafted free agents. So, if he can find consistency, there is still a chance Ross may not end up being a bust.
Giovani Bernard– Joe Mixon fully emerged has the workhorse running back last year. This trend needs to continue in 2019. Bernard is now the change of pace ball carrier. He is also a free agent after the upcoming season. Cincinnati snagged two running backs in the late rounds of the draft. Rodney Anderson in particular is intriguing. There is a good chance one or both late round picks make the team. For an NFL team to carry four running backs today is rare.
Thus, Bernard’s days in Cincinnati appear numbered. If the coaching staff likes what it sees from the rookies in training camp, they could get a decent draft pick in return for Bernard who is still just 27. The preseason injury bug could prompt a team to call.
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"Two Big Takeaways from the Bengals 2019 Draft"