According to Matt Maiocco of Comcast SportsNet, the Cincinnati Bengals nearly traded their fourth round pick to move higher in the second round, positioning themselves to select safety Taylor Mays during the 2010 NFL Draft.
In 2010, the Bengals owned the No. 54 overall pick in the second round. They contacted the 49ers about trading the No. 49 overall selection. The teams would've swapped places in the second round, and the Bengals would've sent the 49ers their fourth-round pick for the right to select Mays.
Rather than a trade, the Bengals elected to use their second round pick on Florida defensive end Carlos Dunlap, who posted 9.5 quarterback sacks during his rookie year. Additionally the Bengals fourth round pick they would have used to trade up for Mays in the second round? Defensive tackle Geno Atkins; Roddrick Muckelroy was the 33rd pick in the fourth round and a compensatory selection, which is not allowed to be traded.
Though he didn't have the numbers, Atkins became one of the team's best pass rushers, in terms of pressures against the quarterback. Essentially it would have been Dunlap and Atkins -- two critical foundation pieces for the defense -- for safety Taylor Mays. Then you have to consider the irony in all of it that the Bengals acquired Mays anyway in a trade with the 49ers, sending the team's 2013 seventh round pick for Mays.
Oh, how things worked out.