The Bengals made two appearances in South Carolina on Wednesday for a pair of Pro Days.
The big one came in Columbia to watch the Gamecocks put their NFL talent on display. They only have three guys likely to get drafted this year, but one of them could be a perfect fit for what the Bengals need most right now.
Pharoh Cooper was not only one of the best receivers in college football this past season, but he was an explosive playmaker who did damage in the return game, catching passes of even as a Wildcat QB. Cooper finished third on the team with 655 all-purpose yards as a true freshman in 2013.
He followed that up by finishing third in the SEC in receptions (69), second in receiving yards (1,136) and ninth in all-purpose yards/game (108.5) as a sophomore, earning First Team All-SEC honors at receiver to go with second-team honors as a returner in 2014.
Despite South Carolina struggling mightily this past season, especially at quarterback, Cooper still managed to lead the team with 66 grabs for 973 yards and eight scores in 2015. He turned pro as a true junior after the season and is now vying to be one of the top receivers in this draft.
At 5'11" and 207 pounds, Cooper is a force in the slot and would very likely start there as a rookie if Cincinnati drafts him. He's been compared to Packers receiver Randall Cobb by CBS Sports and NFL Mocks. The thought of having a Cobb-level player lining up to A.J. Green and Tyler Eifert has to make Bengals fans salivate, not to mention a potential upgrade over Brandon Tate in the return game.
At this point, Cooper is expected to go in Round 2 and may very well be on the board at pick No. 53. Regardless of what the Bengals do in Round 1, they should pull the trigger on Cooper if he's there in Round 2.
Another Gamecocks pass-catcher to watch for is big tight end Jerell Adams. Standing at 6'5" and 247 pounds, Adams finished his career as a Gamecock with 66 receptions for 977 yards and seven touchdowns. He didn't really emerge until his senior season in In 2015, when he was the team's second-leading receiver with 28 receptions for 421 yards and three scores.
Adams is projected as a third or fourth-round pick that nay interest the Bengals if they feel he'd be an upgrade over Tyler Kroft. Ironically, NFL.com's Lance Zierlein compares Adams to Kroft.
In addition to South Carolina, the Bengals made it to South Carolina State to watch their Pro Day. Many teams were in attendance to watch defensive tackle Javon Hargrave, whose stock has rose dramatically throughout the offseason.
The Bengals were among those teams as defensive line coaches from the Eagles, Titans, Steelers and Bengals all put Hargrave through a 45-minute long workout, per Walter Football. Each of those teams also met individually with the impressive defensive lineman.
The 6'1", 309-pound Hargrave racked up 29 sacks and 45.5 total tackles for loss over the last two years as he earned MEAC Defensive Player of the Year and FCS All-America honors both years. He then put on a show at the East-West Shrine Game in which he was arguably the best player all week.
Hargrave is a force in the middle of defensive lines and could become a nice NFL player. He's projected to somewhere between Round 3-5. The Bengals are pretty stacked at this position, but Hargrave would still be a nice addition.