Grading the Bengals' first-round selection of Myles Murphy
With the 28th pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Cincinnati Bengals selected Myles Murphy. The defensive end out of Clemson was a surprising pick amongst Bengals fans but that doesn't mean that it was a bad pick by any means.
At the beginning of mock draft season, Murphy had consistently been someone who was considered to be a top 10-15 pick so getting him at 28 felt a bit like a steal initially but he had dropped over the past few weeks. His production at Clemson was a bit underwhelming and that was a big knock on him.
That being said, the Bengals had to add help to their pass rush and Murphy gives them that. Just think about how lackluster the group looked this past season whenever Trey Hendrickson wasn't on the field. The Bengals finished near the bottom of the league in sacks so adding any kind of help to a weak unit, especially in a conference that has Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, Lamar Jackson, and now Aaron Rodgers, is helpful.
What grade do the Bengals deserve for their selection of Myles Murphy?
Some fans were disappointed that Cincinnati didn't take Michael Mayer with the 28th pick and that didn't bother me, to be honest. This is a strong tight end class and they can wait until the second or third round to find depth behind Irv Smith Jr.
Mel Kiper Jr. had Murphy at 25th on his big board and Todd McShay put him at 24th so the Bengals did okay with where they got him. Considering that D.J. Reader and Trey Hendrickson will be free agents, the Bengals were smart to add depth to their defensive line and pass rush.
I'll give the selection a B+ because while it fills a position of need, Murphy's 2022 season wasn't all that inspiring. Luckily, he's not going to have to be a rockstar right out of the gate and there's time for him to mold into the player the Bengals want him to become.