Ranking the Bengals’ top options with the No. 5 pick in the draft

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - JANUARY 11: DeVonta Smith #6 of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrates his touchdown during the second quarter of the College Football Playoff National Championship game against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Hard Rock Stadium on January 11, 2021 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - JANUARY 11: DeVonta Smith #6 of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrates his touchdown during the second quarter of the College Football Playoff National Championship game against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Hard Rock Stadium on January 11, 2021 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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The Cincinnati Bengals have a big decision to make with the No. 5 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. In 2020, the choice was clear with Joe Burrow being a slam-dunk with the first overall pick. This year, there are many more possibilities with the Bengals’ first-round pick.

While free agency will certainly play a big role in determining the Bengals’ draft strategy, there are some positions that currently stand out as big needs. Wide receiver, cornerback, and both the offensive and defensive lines look poised to have holes that will need to be filled this offseason.

With plenty of cap space, the Bengals should be able to fill a few of these needs by bringing in free agents. However, their notoriously cheap front office may choose to sit out of pursuing the big-time free agents, leaving them with more needs than they would like to have going into the draft.

As Joe Burrow enters his second year in the NFL, the Bengals’ moves this offseason will be crucial. In order to avoid another Carson Palmer situation, they will need to put a great team around Burrow and help him succeed early on. He may have more potential than any other quarterback in franchise history, and the Bengals’ should not take that lightly.

So who should the Bengals be targeting with the No. 5 overall pick? There are a lot of options, but here, we will rank the top five. When accounting for talent, position, and need, five players stand out above the rest as great picks for the Bengals.

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