For the thirty-fifth pick in the second-annual Cincy Jungle Mock Draft, our own Jason Garrison selected is for the Cincinnati Bengals, who have the standard three picks available. In addition, the rest of the draft team put in their two cents afterward as well. First, however, here is the "official" pick...
With the thirty-fifth pick in the 2011 Cincy Jungle Mock Draft, the Cincinnati Bengals select...
Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State
The Bengals need a new quarterback, everybody knows that. In the first round, though, I chose to go the wide receiver route because the top-two quarterbacks in the draft, Cam Newton and Blaine Gabbert, weren’t safe picks at No. 4. Now, with A.J. Green on the roster, the Bengals need somebody to throw the ball to him. Enter Florida State’s Christian Ponder.
No, Ponder doesn’t have the physical talent that Cam Newton or Jake Locker possess and he may not have the arm strength that Gabbert has. But, what he does have is intelligence, leadership, a solid arm and accuracy, all of which add up together to form a near perfect west coast offense leading quarterback and possibly the perfect young quarterback to lead the Bengals.
New Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden has been high on Ponder, who has been rising up through the quarterback rankings since his great Combine and Senior Bowl performances, saying he’s "an interesting guy and a great prospect" and that he brings all the intangibles to the table including leadership.
In the end, the Bengals have changed from a down-field offense, led by Bob Bratkowski, to a west coast offense, led by Gruden, and don’t need a quarterback with Palmer’s howitzer arm to run it. Now that Palmer wants out of Cincinnati, Ponder could easily step into a new system, with talent around him, like Green, Jordan Shipley, Jermaine Gresham and Jerome Simpson, and help Bengals fans forget about the whole Carson Palmer saga.
Get ready to say goodbye to one CP and welcome in another.
Christian Ponder Highlights:
Alternate take #1:
Joe Goodberry also put his two cents in on the matter, with an alternate pick. He selected...
Torrey Smith, WR, Maryland
My draft plan is similar to Jason's (WR & QB). Except I took the franchise quarterback first in Blaine Gabbert. Now I'll go with my third rated wide receiver in this year's draft; Maryland's Torrey Smith.
Smith and the Bengals have already shared interest through Maryland's pro day and an upcoming visit. So this mock could be an actual scenario in case a franchise QB presents itself in the first round. I compared my selection if Blaine Gabbert to the Falcons drafting Matt Ryan. It might be funny to only me that Torrey Smith has been compared to Roddy White. Here we go!
With Torrey Smith, the Bengals have a legitimate outside WR that can stretch the field. Torrey Smith isn't just a deep threat. He offers great run after the catch ability. Unlike most college speed guys, Smith can stop and start just as fast. He's quick in and out of his breaks and has the body control to be a number one WR. Smith must work on the little things to reach his potential but should be an asset in the Bengals new west coast offense.
Alternate take #2:
Friar Bob also put in his two cents on the matter, with an alternate pick. He selected...
Marcus Cannon, OT/OG, TCU
I'm sure I'm going to be about as popular as the plague, but I'm going to have to rain on everybody's parade here. How many times has a team drafted a QB (especially in the second or later round), started him his first game as a rookie, put him behind an absolute sieve of an offensive line, and the player ever succeeded? Anybody?
Well maybe there was somebody. But if there was, I don't know who he was, and the odds are VERY poor that we can recreate him even if he ever existed in the first place. And even though I'm willing to admit we DO need to find a resolution to the Carson Palmer situation, I'm not convinced that drafting any QB in this year is the way to go. And even if it is, without an offensive line capable of protecting him, NO quarterback (save maybe Roethlisberger) can possibly succeed. Ponder has been compared to many other successful quarterbacks, but Big Ben isn't one of them.
But this year is, unfortunately, a fairly weak year for offensive line talent, and with our scout I just simply don't have any faith that we will be able to find the small-school gems that we'd need to find in order to be able to wait until the 4th or 5th round to draft these guys. Worse yet, we need somebody who can play today (and arguably we need two or even three guys who can play today), not in three years. With that in mind, I feel that I simply had no choice but to draft somebody now to start trying to fill in the massive holes in the line.
Of course, figuring out who to draft on the line isn't easy. For example, Orlando Franklin, who has for all but one game in college played as a guard, is listed by CBSSports.com as the 7th best OT available, while National Football Post puts him at 16th... ooookaaay. But some things are a bit easier. The best remaining player (#6) on CBS's list at OT is Marcus Cannon, and although NFP lists him a bit lower, they also rate him as a developmental prospect who has "NO weakness in any critical factors, but will need time and development in order to fulfill his potential". Cannon, who has played right tackle for two years and left tackle for another in college, and looks like a very good right tackle and possibly even an elite guard if he transitions (and stays) there, caught my eye and I just couldn't get off him. He could probably start at RT immediately if we want, or play him at either guard position as well and he'd probably help out a lot. And even if we start him at guard initially, it's not like this team doesn't have a history of training its eventual tackles as guards first...
Regardless of whether he plays OT or OG, however, we simply need help on the offensive line way too badly to wait any longer to start patching the holes in the line. So I selected Marcus Cannon... now I wait for the boos to roll in like thunder of cannons.
|#||Team||Picked By||Name/Positon of Pick|
|1||Carolina||James Shively||Nick Fairley / DT|
|2||Denver||sexsalad||Patrick Peterson / CB
|3||Buffalo||Elguapo09||Von Miller / OLB
|4||Cincinnati||Jason Garrison +2||A.J. Green / WR
|5||Arizona||Broski||Da'Quan Bowers / DE
|6||Cleveland||Joe Goodberry||Marcell Dareus / DL
|7||San Francisco||Heybrown||Prince Amukamara / CB|
|8||Tennessee||Oxalis||Cam Newton / QB|
|9||Dallas||Jim0ijk||Robert Quinn / DE|
|10||Washington||Pardon_My_French||Blaine Gabbert / QB|
|11||Houston||Joe27||Julio Jones / WR|
|12||Minnesota||CarsonOrBust||Tyron Smith / OL|
|13||Detroit||The_Black_Stripes||Cameron Jordan / DL|
|14||St. Louis||Jaegner||Aldon Smith / DE|
|15||Miami||JaredM||Mark Ingram / RB|
|16||Jacksonville||Whodatchemsit||JJ Watt / DE|
|17||New England (from Oakland / Seymour)||UpStateMike||Anthony Castonzo / OT|
|18||San Diego||Quickslant||Mike Pouncey / OG|
|19||New York Giants||TheDealio||Akeem Ayers / OLB|
|20||Tampa Bay||Doc Scratch||Ryan Kerrigan / DE|
|21||Kansas City||Indesignkat||Corey Liuget / DT|
|22||Indianapolis||Ddbumpus||Nate Solder / OT|
|23||Philadelphia||Buckeyenut12||Gabe Carimi / OT|
|24||New Orleans||FriarBob||Cameron Heyward / DE|
|25||Seattle||IgnatiusJReilly||Jake Locker / QB|
|26||Baltimore||FriarBob||Adrian Clayborn / DE|
|27||Atlanta||TruWhoDey||Justin Houston / DE/OLB|
|28||New England||UpStateMike||Muhammad Wilkerson / DL|
|29||Chicago||Bsmith4256||Derek Sherrod / OL|
|30||New York Jets||Polo_614||Phil Taylor / DT|
|31||Pittsburgh||Jason Garrison||Jimmy Smith / CB|
|32||Green Bay||Sean Weaver||Stephen Paea / DL|
|33||New England (from Carolina / Armanti Edwards)||UpStateMike||Brooks Reed / OLB|
|34||Buffalo||Elguapo09||Allen Bailey / DE|
|35||Cincinnati||Jason Garrison +2||Christian Ponder / QB
|46||Denver (from Miami / Brandon Marshall)||sexsalad|
|51||Tampa Bay||Doc Scratch|
|52||New York Giants||TheDealio|
|61||San Diego (from NYJets / Antonio Cromartie)||Quickslant|
|64||Green Bay||Sean Weaver|
|66||Cincinnati||Jason Garrison +2|
|72||New Orleans (from Washington / Jammal Brown)||FriarBob|
|74||New England (from Minnesota / Randy Moss)||UpStateMike|
|83||New York Giants||TheDealio|
|84||Tampa Bay||Doc Scratch|
|89||San Diego (from Seattle / Charlie Whitehurst)||Quickslant|
|94||New York Jets||Polo_614|
|96||Green Bay||Sean Weaver|