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The morning after party weekend

Mel Kiper grades the draft and says the following about Cincinnati:

Cincinnati Bengals: GRADE: C

Cincinnati needed a tight end but never took one. Cornerback Johnathan Joseph was a solid pick, Andrew Whitworth was good value in the second round, but DE Frostee Rucker was a reach in the third round. Linebacker A.J. Nicholson slid because he has had off-the-field issues, but is good with the pads on. Reggie McNeal isn't going to be a quarterback, so it will be interesting to see where he lands. The Bengals also had a couple of insignificant late picks.'s Len Pasquarelli calls into question character the Bengals drafted.

Out of character: For years, the Cincinnati Bengals were notorious for taking character risks in the draft. And then, along came coach Marvin Lewis, and most of the gambles on prospects with checkered pasts stopped. But not completely. Lewis still turns a covetous eye every so often to a prospect with a wart or two on him. Sometimes football skills still get in the way of common sense. He did so last year when he plucked Chris Henry in the third round and, while the former West Virginia star was a productive No. 3 wide receiver for the Bengals as a rookie, he hasn't been able to stay out of trouble during the offseason.

Why bring this up now? Because on Sunday, in the fifth round, the Bengals plucked Florida State linebacker A.J. Nicholson, a guy who at least three other franchises had removed from their boards because of troubling incidents in his past. Some of the media types in Cincinnati, who sat in on Nicholson's conference call on Sunday said that it was hilarious listening to the former Seminoles defender recount the night police used a taser gun on him. It might not be a laughing matter to the Cincinnati management, however, if Nicholson's past comes back to bite them. Lewis has promulgated an admirable reversal of a once-moribund franchise and the Bengals are emerging as a powerhouse team. But you can't talk the talk about avoiding character risks without also walking the walk. Or at least walking away from them.

More ARTICLE DUMPS (go ahead, giggle)

Ags' McNeal gets chance to catch on
Joseph welcomed by ol' No. 85
Bengals go long
Samoan light on experience, big on size
Coach: He has chance to be Bengals' Randle El
Off-field issues cause Seminole to fall in the draft
Nicholson excited about prospects with Cincinnati
Bengals take risks with some picks

Other FA signings
Bengals reportedly sign punterM Danny Baugher

Update - 10:14AM: FoxSports does a run down and calls the Bengals draft, "ok".

We talked with Marvin Lewis on the air after he picked Jon Joseph, and he gushed about the South Carolina CB Jonathan Joseph. But I was surprised Cincy didn't take a defensive tackle in round 1. And I thought Thomas Howard, and shifting him perhaps to safety, would be the pick in the first round. Tackle Andrew Whitworth was a good value pick in round 2, but I thought Cincy should've picked another defensive player. Frostee Rucker was a reach in round 3.

Reggie McNeal insists on playing quarterback. Not sure that is going to work out.

AJ Nicholson has off the field issues but is a good talent, even though he isn't super fast. But Lewis can work with him. It was an ok draft for the Bengals.