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Peter King: Bengals Have Julio Jones Ahead of A.J. Green on Draft Board

A new debate has reared its head among draftniks across the nation: who is the safer pick, Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones or Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green?

According to Sports Illustrated NFL writer Peter King, the Bengals are one of the teams that have jumped across the line from the Green side to the Jones side, and now consider Julio Jones a safer pick, if both receivers are available, when the Bengals go on the clock in the first round.

According to King, the Bengals were not too terribly impressed with Green as a practice player or a willing blocker. Jay Gruden, and his new west coast offense, will require new receivers to practice hard and block downfield.

During Tuesday's annual NFL meetings, head coach Marvin Lewis even weighed in on the subject.

"Sometimes we as teams all look at things slightly differently. But they're both going to be outstanding players. They're big, they play the game physically, they run well.

"A.J. has demonstrated acrobatic catching ability. They both have a big catching radius. Julio has been a tenacious blocker. The question is, what do you value most?''

The first three teams in the draft, the Panthers, Broncos and Bills, are all three more likely to draft a defensive player, like Patrick Peterson, Nick Fairley or Da'Quan Bowers, or a Quarterback like, Blaine Gabbert or Cam Newton, than they are a wide receiver. So, when the Bengals go on the clock at No. 4, they may find themselves able to choose between Green and Jones.

And if there was any question in your mind that the Bengals will draft an offensive player first, Lewis said something else that should remind you which team we're cheering for:

"My boss loves offense,'' Lewis said Tuesday morning.