When NFL teams spend their first-round pick on a player, they typically expect that player to come in and make some sort of positive impact as a rookie. The Cincinnati Bengals have not gotten that from Myles Murphy, who they took with the 28th pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.
The pick was a bit surprising considering the Bengals had other needs but hey, why not add more pass rushers? Fans figured with Trey Hendrickson being the only real threat in the pass-rushing department, adding Murphy could maybe open things up more in that department.
Unfortunately, that has yet to be seen by the rookie first-rounder out of Clemson. When Josh Edwards of CBS Sports had to rank the first-round rookies so far this season, he put Murphy in the fourth-worst spot, ahead of only Mazi Smith (Cowboys), Nolan Smith (Eagles), and Tyree Wilson (Raiders).
"Murphy has played all of 108 defensive snaps this season. His largest workload (26 defensive snaps) came Sunday against the Texans, equalling his snaps played over the prior four games. He has not been an impact player but he has been solid all-around. Murphy still needs to develop more of a rush plan at this level, specifically when his initial rush is stopped. "- Josh Edwards
Myles Murphy gets low mark halfway through rookie campaign
We haven't seen much of Murphy through nine games but that could change as early as Thursday night. With Sam Hubbard out and Trey Hendrickson potentially limited for the Thursday Night Football showdown with the Ravens, Murphy would be expected to step into a bigger role and get after Lamar Jackson.
There's still time for Murphy to prove himself this year. Even if he doesn't do much for the rest of the 2023 season, the Bengals have shown that they prefer drafting guys for the future and not for the present day. Just look at last year's first-round pick, Dax Hill. The Bengals drafted Hill 31st overall and he barely played (and when he did, he wasn't very good). Now he's thriving in his second year!
Sometimes rookies step into the league and make an immediate impact and sometimes it takes them a little longer to get going. Myles Murphy could fall into the latter category but we'll have to see what kind of player he becomes. For now, the ranking he received in Edwards' article is fair.
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