We're less than a month away from the 2013 NFL Draft in which the Bengals will select 10 new players, including four in the first three rounds. Every year the draft supplies teams top-notch players as well as frustrating busts and, since nobody can tell the future, each team has seen their fair share of both.
The National Football Post has put together a list of things we can expect based on the last several years of the draft. There will be 254 players selected in the draft and here's what they predict will happen:
- 171 players will play at least three seasons
- 130 players will play at least five seasons
- 77 players will start for at least three seasons
- 58 players will start for at least five seasons
- 42 players will start as rookies
- 24 players will be selected to at least one Pro Bowl
- 10 players will be selected to at least three Pro Bowls
- 13 players will be selected as an All Pro at least once
- Three players will be selected as an All Pro at least three times
In 2012, the Bengals had 10 draft picks and while it's still early to tell who will start for three seasons or more, we do know that, since NFP labeled that a starter is a player who starts at least eight games in a season, the only player from the latest draft is on his way to being one of the 77 or maybe even 58 players who will start for at least three or five seasons.
Green, Dalton, Atkins and Michael Johnson are on their way to starting for their third season, while Rey Maualuga is possibly on his way to starting his fifth while Andrew Whitworth, Leon Hall and a couple others have already started five seasons.
Hall is one of those 13 players to be named All Pro along with A.J. Green, who also has two Pro Bowls, and Geno Atkins has been an All Pro twice, along with being to the Pro Bowl twice. Tight end Jermaine Gresham has also been named to two Pro Bowls. Those aren't the only Bengals players who are, or who will be, in the small percentage of players to make multiple Pro Bowls or to be named as All Pros.
While free agency is important, especially when it comes to re-signing your own players, good teams really do build themselves in the draft. If the Bengals continue to be successful in the draft over the next couple years, they could find themselves going deep into the playoffs.