Grading every Bengals first-round pick under Zac Taylor

NFL Combine
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Dax Hill (31st overall in 2022)

After their surprise trip to the Super Bowl in the 2021 season, the Bengals had a late first-round pick and took Daxton Hill out of Michigan. This was the pick because Cincinnati knew that Jessie Bates probably wouldn't be coming back after signing the franchise tag for the 2022 season so the team was looking to replace him.

Hill didn't see the field much as a rookie, appearing in 15 games but making just two starts. He appeared in only 14% of the defensive snaps and 42% of special teams snaps. We all knew this was going to be the case though because of the situation with Bates. Hill wasn't drafted to make an impact in 2022, he was drafted to take over for Bates in 2023 and become a solid piece in the Bengals' defense.

Hill saw more playing time in the playoffs and looked decent but it's really hard to grade him fairly because we didn't see much of him. I won't hold Hill's lack of playing time against him because fans knew that he'd be more of a background character during Bates' final season.

Grade: B-

Next. Top 15 Draft Picks in Bengals History. dark

For the most part, the Bengals have made good picks since Zac Taylor took over and it's led to the team completing changing the narrative on the organization. Burrow and Chase were the best picks, Hill is still a bit of an incomplete but hopefully we'll see more from him, and even Williams wasn't a terrible pick.

What grades would you give these draft picks?