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NFL Draft 2012: NFP Has Cincinnati Selecting Oklahoma State Free Safety Markelle Martin

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Wes Bunting with the National Football Post, recently posted a three-round mock draft, concluding with a third-round prediction that the Bengals will take a safety after going cornerback, running back and offensive guard in the first two rounds.

83. Cincinnati Bengals: Markelle Martin FS, Oklahoma State
A gifted athlete with a good burst and range in the deep half. However, wastes motion out of his breaks and isn't a very good open field tackler. Possesses slightly above-average instincts, but will make more plays on the football when he tightens up his footwork. A potential starter only at this stage because of his intriguing athleticism.

So, let's tally up the Bengals' take in Bunting's mock:
  1. Alabama CB Dre Kirkpatrick
  2. Boise State RB Doug Martin
  3. Iowa State OG Kelechi Osemele
  4. Oklahoma State FS Markelle Martin

Makelle Martin has a significant upside because of his great athleticism and his ability to cover the deep ball. However his footwork is sloppy and his open-field tackling leaves a lot to be desired. Martin ran in the 4.6s during his Pro Day last week, but his movement appeared natural with a fully rehabilitated knee, capable of firing out of his stance.

Highly unlikely that Markelle Martin would start for the Bengals in 2012 due to the re-signing of Reggie Nelson, but it is an opportunity for the prospect to ease into the defense as a backup. At the very least, his speed and athleticism would be put to good use on special teams.