Cincinnati Bengals’ draft brought their offseason grade down

(Photo by Mindy Small/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mindy Small/Getty Images) /

The Cincinnati Bengals entered the most critical offseason of their franchise’s history and hit a grand slam out of the park with what they did in free agency. They had to upgrade their offensive line and they did just that with the additions of Ted Karras, Alex Cappa, and La’el Collins.

The draft, however, is a different story.

It’s not as though the Bengals had an atrocious draft. It was a bit of an interesting one though, as some feel they reached on several of their picks.

Kristopher Knox of Bleacher Report dinged them in his latest 2022 offseason report card. He still respected what Cincinnati did overall, giving them an A grade in that department but overall, they received a B grade from Knox.

Knox wrote:

"The Cincinnati Bengals rival the Ravens for the best offseason in the AFC North. While they didn’t quite nail the draft as well as Baltimore did, the Bengals did a solid job of prioritizing value over need. That’s the right call for a team with a Super Bowl-caliber roster."

Cincinnati Bengals’ draft held them back from perfect offseason grade

As Knox notes, were it not for the Ravens nailing their draft, they’d have put together the best offseason in the division. That’s an excellent sign for a team that just went to the Super Bowl three months ago.

Knox had an issue with Cincy’s draft because he didn’t feel they’d make immediate impacts on the roster. He felt this was a way for the team to address potential problems down the road and he’s not wrong there. Daxton Hill was taken in the first round because of the Jessie Bates contract situation and it doesn’t take a genius to figure that out.

"Just don’t expect Cincinnati to see a huge immediate impact from its draft class. Guys like safety Daxton Hill—an insurance policy and possible successor to the franchise-tagged Jessie Bates III—are more likely to provide dividends down the road."

Even with the draft not being a home run, the Bengals did enough this offseason that they should still be able to compete in a stacked AFC.

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At the end of the day, that’s all that matters for them this offseason.