While the offensive line position isn't the first thing you think of when the thought "What do the Bengals need to address in the upcoming NFL Draft?" pops into your head -- normally, sexy positions like wide receiver (Mardy-Mar in the house) or tight end come to mind -- it's a safe bet that if someone of quality drops in the first round, Cincinnati is apparently willing to provide more protection to Carson Palmer.
Enter the workout and visitation of Idaho Vandal, Mike Iupati.
While Iupati may not be as popular as Russel Okong, Bruce Campbell or Trent Williams, you better believe teams in need of a solid offensive lineman are certainly aware of him. In fact, the Bengals were one of just nine teams showing interest in Iupati, most of which -- except perhaps the Bengals -- are in need of a quality offensive line. This includes Oakland, Kansas City, Cleveland, Detroit and San Francisco.
Again, these are teams that need quality offensive linemen more than the Bengals. Nevertheless, if he isn't snatched up by the 21st pick, don't be surprised if Mike and Marvin pull the trigger -- and if that happens, Brown won't have to worry about any ugly Andre Smith-style holdouts either. Well, at least I hope a 21st pick wouldn't be that arrogant, unless, of course, he's getting low-balled by the front office (like that EVER happens in Cincinnati).
Here are some of Iupati's particulars:
The 6-foot-6, 331-pounder is coveted by NFL teams for his intensity, athleticism, long arms and brute strength. While he still needs to refine his techique and adjust to a higher level of football, he's regarded as a rising draft prospect.
He also has an awesome head of hair.
Who knows? Maybe the Bengals' front office wants to add another player with bad-ass hair to the team, because if Iupati joins the likes of Jonathan Fanene, Domata Peko, and Rey Maualuga, the Bengals would have a team of veritable Sampsons.
Here's a question for you guys: Let's say both Dez Bryant and Iupati fall all the way to the Bengals' first round slot. Who would you draft?