Now that the NFL Draft is over, grades will be released exploring how well a team drafted. They are useful tools to quickly explain how a team drafted, but not so much the individual players -- where three years is the standard waiting time before judging a player after being drafted. So we have another year before we can grade Andre Smith. Really.
As he does every year, Mel Kiper Jr. released his final grades after the 2011 NFL draft was completed. He broke it down into two grades: did teams address their needs and how much value did they get with their picks.
The general consensus is that the Bengals had a good draft. Not Kiper. Kiper thought the Bengals had a great draft (In$ider), awarding Cincinnati with one of two "As" of all the 32 teams (the Lions were the other).
They've received their fair share of negativity over the years, but you have to give the Bengals a lot of credit for what they accomplished in 2011. They can see the big roster voids on the horizon at quarterback and wide receiver, and they didn't wait. Green is a superstar in the making, and considering the run on quarterbacks before the middle of the first round, getting Dalton was a steal by comparison. Moch is a pass-rushing specialist that will make plays, and they got good value in Boling and Sands. A great three days for the Bengals.
Based on the teams needs, Kiper gave the Bengals a "B+". As for the team's values in their picks; a solid "A".
Cincy Jungle fans were conflicted. In a poll released Saturday night, 47% thought the team deserves an "A" with 44% handing the team a "B".