Cincinnati Bengals: First Round Shaping Up Nicely Beyond Burrow
With Joe Burrow a virtual lock to the Cincinnati Bengals, most fans aren’t worried about any selection beyond number one. However, how the rest of the round goes will heavily impact the future of the franchise.
The combine continues to play out well for the Cincinnati Bengals. After squashing the rumors that Joe Burrow would refuse to play for the organization, the two parties went on to have what was reportedly a fantastic first meeting.
Beyond building a rapport with the cigar-smoking LSU product, the other signal-callers and wide receivers have performed in a way that could be advantageous to the Bengals.
Utah State’s Jordan Love and Washington’s Jacob Eason may have done enough to hear their name’s called within the first 32 selections.
For Love, his measurements, athleticism for the position, and strong-arm have him trending upwards.
For Eason, reports began to pour in that he was “too comfortable” during interviews, suggesting his stock was falling. Still, this time of the season is notorious for rumors and smokescreens. During the throwing portion of the combine drills, Eason looked good and will surely have teams considering drafting him early.
This is great news for the Bengal’s, who hold the first pick in the second round. Every quarterback that gets taken early pushes a defensive player or offensive lineman down the board. Beyond Burrow, four other quarterbacks look like they have a shot of being taken before selection #33. It may not seem like much, but it could net coordinator Lou Anarumo the defensive difference-maker he’s been searching for.
Jalen Hurts shouldn’t be forgotten either after his standout combine performance. He still isn’t being projected to go in the first round, but if a quarterback-needy team sees he’s still available at the start of day two, the Bengal’s phones could begin buzzing with trade offers. Perhaps the front office can get a franchise to overpay in order to secure their quarterback of the future, netting some extra draft capital to take advantage of the unprecedented wide-receiver class.
Speaking of the wide-receivers, several prospects reigning from the position seemed to have caused their stock to sky-rocket, which will benefit Cincinnati.
Denzel Mims ran a sub 4.4 40-yard-dash, which could be too tempting for teams in the back half of the first round to pass up on. Chase Claypool put up combine numbers that are eerily similar to those of Calvin Johnson. If an organization falls in love with that pro-comparison, it could also cause them to skip out on a top tier defensive player or big man along the offensive trenches.
These two simply add to the list of the many receivers that could be taken before Cincinnati’s second selection.
The Bengal’s team website has seemed to make it clear they’re mainly focused on the defensive side of the ball for their second-round pick. So while it may be difficult to stomach the idea that a lot of high-end receivers will fly off the board, it means the Bengal’s will get a player at a position they were targeting. Plus, with the tremendous depth of the class, they can still snag a wideout in round three if they desire to do so.
Burrow already has Bengal’s fans ecstatic for the first round but with the way the rest of the night is looking, the chances of the front office securing another elite talent in round two are promising.