3 studs the Bengals clearly should've drafted over Jackson Carman

Carman has not lived up to his second-round stock.

Jacksonville Jaguars v Cincinnati Bengals
Jacksonville Jaguars v Cincinnati Bengals / Cooper Neill/GettyImages
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1. Trey Smith (Drafted 226th overall by the Chiefs)

Deep in the sixth round, the Kansas City Chiefs found a gem when they drafted Trey Smith out of Tennessee. Smith had dropped in the draft due to a blood clot disorder but the Chiefs took a chance on him and he has panned out beautifully for them.

As a rookie, Smith played every game at right guard and finished the season with a PFF grade of 72.3. He had a 71.5 PFF grade in 2022 and currently has a 72.6 PFF grade, as of this writing in 2023. The Bengals really could have used Smith during the 2021 season, as the right guard position was a revolving door between three different players and none of them played particularly well.

The Bengals signed Alex Cappa in 2022 and he's been fine but Smith has definitely been the better right guard between the two. There's obviously no guarantee that Smith would have been the same player had he been drafted by Cincinnati but it's certainly painful knowing that a talented guard was still on the board when the Bengals took Carman to fill the role instead.

The Chiefs managed to get two starting offensive linemen in the second and sixth round of the 2021 draft and the Bengals had a shot at both of those guys. Would the offensive line be different had those guys been taken by Cincinnati instead? We'll never know but it feels as though they'd have more to offer this team than Jackson Carman has.

Next. Almost Nothing. 4 Bengals Who Have Offered Almost Nothing in 2023. dark