The University of Wisconsin had a very successful 2011 season, culminating in a last-second, heartbreaking loss to the University of Oregon in the Rose Bowl. The Badgers had quite a few good prospects on their roster last year, both at the skill positions and on the offensive line. These talented players were on display for their Pro Day and all 32 NFL teams were represented at the event.
Quarterback Russell Wilson performed excellent in his drills, improving his stock significantly from his Combine and Senior performances. He'll likely be a mid-round pick because of his size, but he could become a sleeper pick and eventual NFL starter. But, the Bengals aren't in the market for a quarterback this year so they likely weren't too enamored with Wilson's great workout. It's likely that two other Wisconsin products were under the watchful eyes of the Bengals' staff.
Wide receiver Nick Toon is slated for the middle rounds of the draft as well and according to Gil Brandt of NFL.com, he worked out in a limited fashion, but still had a great day. He ran the 40-yard dash twice, clocking in at 4.38 and 4.41 which was eye-opening, given his 6'2", 211-pound frame. Toon, though nursing some injuries, did position drills and was equally as impressive in those. If the Bengals don't go after a veteran wide receiver in free agency, Toon could be an option to compete for the No.2 job with Armon Binns.
The Bengals are also in the market for an interior offensive lineman, namely a guard, and the Badgers are a college football factory for quality offensive linemen. Kevin Zeitler is a versatile player that can be plugged in at a various spots on the line and is pegged to be a solid second-round pick in April. He performed well at the Combine last month and the team was known to have spoken with Zeitler that week
. With the Bengals in the market for a couple of guards this offseason, they could choose Zeitler in the second if they go in a different direction with their first round picks.
Zeitler's fellow line mate, Peter Konz, didn't work out at the Pro Day as he has been nursing an injury. He's a fringe first to second round pick and can also play numerous spots on the line. Because of his versatility, he is another player that the team could be targeting, though they couldn't get a good read on him because of his non-participation in the drills.
All three were major contributors to the Badgers' high-flying offense with Zeitler and Konz blocking for both Russell Wilson's great year, as well as the one put up by running back Montee Ball. Toon was a benefactor to Zeitler's, Konz's and Wilson's play, as he put up 64 catches for 926 yards and ten touchdowns on the year. Both would likely be early contributors to the Bengals offense and are very realistic draft prospects for the team.