Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis believes that more teams will trade their draft picks this year because of the labor situation between the owners and players which could push free agency until after this year's NFL Draft, according to the Mothership.
"I think we have to see what happens on the day. I don't think any team knows," Lewis said." Particularly because you can't trade a veteran player. I don’t see why teams would necessarily move around too much right now, but I do think it will be a draft where people will move if it does come before free agency. It may be a draft that has a lot of movement."
The Bengals are not the type of team that trades away draft picks with a future-minded point of view, like picking up additional picks to fill gaps on the roster. And this would be the ideal year to do it, forfeiting the fourth overall selection for maybe a late first round pick and an additional Friday pick (second or third round). This team needs more draft picks to fill the gaping holes that are being left by departing veterans, ineffectual performances and a pouty quarterback that some would go as far as to call a quitter.
Consider that the team needs at least one guard, to upgrade left guard specifically; a position that Nate Livings was graded as one of the worst pass blockers on the team with a below average run blocking grade. Complicating matters is Bobbie Williams entering the final year under contract. The Bengals offense were arguably at their best -- during the Marvin Lewis era -- when Eric Steinbach and Williams were the team's guards.
The team needs a quarterback, maybe two considering that Carson Palmer will not play for the Bengals and we feel Jordan Palmer will not be retained -- we could actually see a second and seventh round selection at quarterback and a veteran free agent signing to start the season. At the very least, the Bengals find their franchise-level quarterback in the draft and sit him behind a veteran quarterback. Dan LeFevour continues developing as the team's eventual backup quarterback behind the "franchise" quarterback they draft this year. We're totally speculating at this point.
The team could draft a running back, linebacker, an offensive tackle, defensive linemen, a cornerback and a couple of safeties. And we also have a sneaking suspicion that the Bengals are looking to draft a place kicker this year as well -- think Nebraska's Alex Henery. Sure the team could go with Mike Nugent, but there has to be serious durability concerns. Cincinnati needs stability with a place kicker as they do at multiple positions.
And the best way to do that, with the current labor climate holding up free agency (at least for now), is adding more draft picks to the pool to fill those gaps.