4 positions Bengals could draft in first round of 2023 NFL Draft, 3 to steer clear of

2018 NFL Draft
2018 NFL Draft / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages
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Could Draft: EDGE/DL

The Bengals' defensive unit in 2022 was one of the best we've seen in recent history, however, if there was something they struggled with, it was getting to the quarterback.

As a whole, the unit finished with the fourth-least sacks in the league with just 30. They did finish fourth in QB knockdown percentage and in the upper half of the league in pressure percentage, which means the defensive line was getting in the backfield, just not in time to take the quarterback down before they were able to get rid of the ball.

The lack of production in the sacks department has led some fans to pound the table for the front office to take an explosive pass rusher in the first round, and I see where they're coming from. With the safety department taking a step back this upcoming season after losing Bell and Bates, and the CB room's effectiveness still up in the air as we wait to see how Awuzie's recovery goes, that secondary is going to need the line to be much more consistent at getting to the QB.

Don't get me wrong, I love the defensive line unit. Hubbard, Hendrickson, Hill, and Reader are all great and have contributed heavily to this team's recent success. Even the depth is nothing to scoff at, as Ossai, Sample, Carter, Tupou, and Tufele have all stepped up when needed but they need someone more explosive to rotate into the lineup when they're having trouble getting to the opposing quarterback, whether it be someone on the edge or the interior.

Some that have been mocked to still potentially be around by the time the Bengals are ready to make their selection are Clemson's Bryan Bresee and Myles Murphy, Georgia Tech's Keion White, and Iowa State's Will McDonald IV, just to name a few.

Adding any of these guys could make the Cincy D-Line a more dominating, fear-inducing unit, and I can certainly see why some fans would want them to draft a pass rusher in the first round.

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Who do you think the Bengals should take with the 28th overall pick?