Bengals not drafting OT Penei Sewell unrelated to WR Ja’marr Chase

EUGENE, OREGON - NOVEMBER 16:. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
EUGENE, OREGON - NOVEMBER 16:. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /

The debate continues. Who should the Cincinnati Bengals draft at five in the 2021 NFL Draft? Here are a few reasons why the organization might not draft Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell. These reasons do not include LSU wide receiver, Ja’marr Chase.

It could be determined by the Atlanta Falcons owning the fourth pick in the draft. There is a sense from the talking heads that the Falcons might draft a quarterback. But what if they don’t? According to Draftkings, the non-QB who has the best odds of being drafted by Atlanta is Sewell.

If Atlanta decides to stick with QB Matt Ryan, their best move may be to upgrade their offensive line. There is also media around the Falcons’ organization who think it would be best if the team concentrates on the trenches. Second, there are a lot of NFL teams who need good offensive linemen.

Finding OL is a constant theme throughout the NFL every year which was highlighted in the Super Bowl. Protect the passer and get to the passer. So even if there is not a QB on the board who the Falcons like, they could find a trade partner who could jump at the opportunity to leapfrog the Bengals to select Sewell at four.

If Sewell truly is a generational left tackle as many have touted him to be, there will be an organization looking to move up to protect their own investment at QB. Therefore, if it makes you feel better, the Chase versus Sewell decision may never come into play.

Third, most people covering the draft assume Cincinnati has Sewell at the top of their draft board as far as OL is concerned. Perhaps analysts are mistaken. When it comes to OL, the Bengals seem to value versatility over capability. Maybe they see Northwestern OL Rashawn Slater as being more their cup of tea.

Slater is constantly being lauded for his “versatility” as a player who can play all five offensive line positions. Slater would allow the Bengals to keep Jonah Williams at left tackle and Riley Reiff per their plan according to ESPN’s Ben Baby.

That would leave a glaring hole at right guard and center, with the injury to Bengals center Trey Hopkins, that could be more seamlessly filled with the addition of multifaceted Slater as opposed to pure tackle, Sewell. The Bengals could see Slater as being a better option now and a possible long-term option at RT beyond 2021.

The consensus could think the Bengals are crazy for passing on Sewell to draft Slater, but skeptics would not be alone in that assessment. NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah still has Slater rated ahead of Sewell. Maybe because of Slater’s flexibility to play multiple positions, the Bengals do as well.

Sewell is a young man who is sure of himself and is determined to play tackle in the NFL. Why wouldn’t he be? Sewell has been called a generational talent at the most important position along the OL. Sewell will be a cornerstone player for the franchise that has the privilege of selecting him in the first round.

However, if Sewell were to be selected by the Bengals, there is a good chance they will ask him to start his career at guard. That could lead to some tension. Not only among players but between the player and organization also. Yes, they are all professionals, but they are also human.

Next. Bengals head coach Zac Taylor no room for 2021 NFL Draft errors. dark

There remains a chance the Cincinnati Bengals do not draft Sewell sixteen days from today. Moreover, the reason for that may have little to do with Chase. Something to keep a close eye on when the NFL draft begins on April 29.