Cincinnati Bengals: It’s Time to Change the Draft Strategy
Years of stocking up on corners high in the draft have hurt the Cincinnati Bengals when it comes to pass rushers.
Now, that’s not to say these corners have necessarily been bad or awful players, but as we’ve seen through six games, the Bengals need to get to the QB a whole lot better.
Sure, Geno Atkins and Carlos Dunlap have been outstanding players in the league. However, other than Margus Hunt, the Bengals have not drafted a pass rushers in the early rounds in a very long time. As a matter of fact, outside of a few guys here and there (A.J. Green, Tyler Eifert) the first round for the Bengals has been reserved for offensive linemen and corner backs. That Offensive Line thing hasn’t been great so far, has it?
The Bengals have built a very young defensive back core to be excited about. A future group of Dre Kirkpatrick, Darqueze Dennard, William Jackson III, Josh Shaw and even recent rookie waiver wire pickup KeiVarae Russell should have many people excited, but honestly, that’s enough .
A lot can happen with ten games left to play this season but as far as pass rushers go, there are a lot of very talented players the Bengals can get their hands on in 2017. Yes Margus Hunt and Will Clarke have been great contributions to Dunlap, Atkins and Michael Johnson and yes, they are playing without the steal of the 2016 NFL Draft in Andrew Billings.
It’s time to keep adding guys that can get to the QB and make plays in the backfield. No More corners in round 1, unless it’s truly a guy you can’t miss on at your draft selection, and even then they need to look at every option before then.
This group has drafted well for a very long time, but that doesn’t mean you can’t switch up your strategy, just enough to fill the needs as well as want.