The Cincinnati Bengals had seven rookies suit up for them during the course of the 2022 season. With the season in the rearview mirror, let's go through and give each of these seven rookies a grade.
For those who might have forgotten, here was the Bengals 2022 draft class:
Round 1 - Dax Hill, DB (Michigan)
Round 2 - Cam Taylor-Britt, CB (Nebraska)
Round 3 - Zach Carter, DE (Florida)
Round 4 - Cordell Volson, OT (North Dakota State)
Round 5 - Tycen Anderson, S (Toledo)
Round 7 - Jeff Gunter, LB (Coastal Carolina)
Out of this bunch, we didn't get to see Anderson in action, as he spent the season on IR. Gunter was also banged up and missed time, as did Taylor-Britt.
Five of the six draft picks took the field this season and so did two rookie UDFAs. Cal Adomitis stepped into the long-snapper role after Clark Harris was injured while Allan George played in seven games.
The grades will mostly be based on how much we saw the player and if they did what was expected of them. Obviously, we expect more from first-round picks than we do from seventh-round picks and that'll be taken into account here.
Let's start with the 2022 first-round pick.
I'll just say it. As a first-round pick, Dax Hill was expected to play a much bigger role for the Bengals and he didn't do that. It's not entirely his fault, as the team didn't really have a place for him with both Jessie Bates and Vonn Bell remaining healthy throughout the season.
Still, Hill was drafted to slide into Bates' role when he likely departs this offseason and we didn't get to see him in action much. He was mostly utilized on special teams, which isn't exactly what a first-round pick is supposed to be thriving in. Hill also struggled with penalties and was flagged three times in the Wild Card game against the Ravens.
PFF gave Hill grades of 58.1 (overall), 71.5 (run defense), 58.9 (pass rush), and 54.4 (coverage). PFF notes that Hill was targeted eight times and surrendered seven receptions. He did get more opportunities in the playoffs and performed decently, earning a PFF coverage grade of 60.0. He was targeted three times and allowed zero receptions.