10 best first-round draft picks in Bengals history

2021 NFL Draft
2021 NFL Draft / Gregory Shamus/GettyImages
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3. A.J. Green

Cincinnati found themselves in another rebuilding era as 2011 came around. The relationship with Carson Palmer had soured, he requested a trade that the front office wasn’t going to give him,so Palmer retired.

In the 2011 draft, Lewis and company planned as if Palmer was never coming back. They took A.J. Green with the fourth overall pick and early in the second round took quarterback Andy Dalton.

Together this duo looked like they could be the next Montana/Rice or Manning/Harrison. In Green’s first five seasons, he totaled over 1,000 receiving yards a season. In three of those campaigns, he also had double-digit touchdowns.

He made the All-Rookie team in 2011. Green earned a spot on the Second-Team All-Pro team twice and was a seven-time Pro Bowler. Unlike the other players on this list, he did this in Cincinnati.
The Hall of Fame is not a lock but was is inevitable is a place in the Bengals Ring of Honor.

2. Joe Burrow

Joe Burrow came out of nowhere in 2019 to take LSU to the National Championship game to defeat Clemson. During that campaign, he threw for over 5,000 yards and 60 touchdowns.

Clearly, Burrow was no fluke. He struggled in his rookie season eventually tearing his ACL and MCL, leading many Bengals fans to worry that he might be another quarterback bust in Cincy.

In 202, Burrow came back with a vengeance becoming one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL without a doubt. He was so good that he got sacked nine times in the divisional round of the playoffs against the Titans and still win the game.

He took our boys to the Super Bowl in 2021 losing to the Rams in a tight game. Again last season he almost took them back to the promised land but fell short in Kansas City in the AFC Championship game. Burrow might be early into his career but we know that he's going to go down as one of the best draft picks in Bengals history, even if he's not at the No. 1 spot yet.