Ten days. Only ten days separate us and arguably the most exciting offseason event--the NFL draft.
In just over a week, the draft will open and team rosters will receive a major boost of youth and talent via this year's class of former college players. Even more exciting, the start of the draft also signals the end of the limitless stream of mock drafts from every sports writer with a pulse.
It's a win/win.
Until then, however, mock drafts still remain relevant, and ESPN's power duo of Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay are two of the biggest names in the scouting community. On Monday, McShay released his newest mock, and his pick for the Bengals is a bit of a surprise.
McShay's pick: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
Hensley's comment: I would still be surprised by this pick. The Bengals need a right tackle, outside linebacker, safety and running back more than cornerback. If Trufant represents the best value at this spot, the Bengals should trade down. My guess is the Bengals are hoping right tackle D.J. Fluker or safety Kenny Vaccaro falls to them here.
As Jamison Hensley accurately points out, selecting a corner back at the 21 spot is a long shot. Regardless of Trufant's skill level, the Bengals have far more pressing needs and history shows that they favor drafting by those needs over adopting a BPA strategy in the first round. As Hensley says, if Trufant is the only player sitting atop their draft board, the Bengals will very likely attempt to trade back.
If the Bengals had failed to re-sign either Adam Jones or Terence Newman earlier in free agency, then perhaps an argument could be made for taking a cornerback in the first. As it stands now, though, the Bengals have several other major holes on their roster that need attention first (right tackle, safety) and selecting a cornerback just wouldn't make sense.