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NFL Draft 2017: Trading back a real option for Bengals in Round 1

If the Bengals are set on drafting a defensive end in Round 1, trading back could be a good idea.

The NFL Draft is hours away and we’re all anxiously wondering who the Cincinnati Bengals will select in Round 1.

As the draft nears, it appears trading back in Round 1 is a real possibility for the Bengals, who currently own the No. 9 overall pick heading into the evening.

But, could the Bengals trade back to a later pick in Round 1? On Tuesday, Marvin Lewis gave his pre-draft press conference and may have hinted at a draft-day trade coming.

“When we make our first round pick, whenever that may be, ya know,” Lewis said with a smile in regards to the Bengals’ season ticket holder who will present a Bengals jersey to Roger Goodell when the Bengals make their Round 1 pick.

Lewis laughed it off, but, then may have hinted at a trade again just seconds later when a member of the press asked when the Bengals would be making their pick on Thursday night.

"Likely not at 8:05, but hopefully before midnight," Lewis said, again laughing.

So, are the Bengals preparing to trade back in the NFL Draft when they already have 11 selections throughout the seven rounds? On Wednesday, Dave Lapham posed his “dream draft” scenario for the Bengals in Round 1 and then an actual draft scenario.

In the dream draft scenario, Lapham has the Bengals trading down to the No. 15-18 range and then going with Derek Barnett, Charles Harris or Takkarist McKinley, in that order, depending on who’s available. The idea behind this is that no pass rusher remaining on the board at No. 9 is likely to be worthy of a top 10 pick. But, the Bengals could trade down, add a valuable draft piece and then get a pass rusher in the middle or Round 1. If Lapham is even discussing such an idea, it’s probably because he’s heard it is a possibility for the Bengals.

Additionally, the Bengals met with many late Round 1 prospects in the weeks leading up to the draft. Players like Garrett Bolles, Cam Robinson, Takkarist McKinley and Dalvin Cook are all guys the Bengals have met with who didn't make sense as top 10 picks, but, could be late Round 1 picks if the Bengals opt to move back. So, have the Bengals been preparing to move back for a while now?

Additionally, the Bengals already have 11 draft picks, so do they really need more? And, reportedly, many teams want to trade back in Round 1, but, it doesn’t seem many teams want to trade up for a top 10 pick. The issue with this year’s draft is that after the top eight (or so) players, many of the next 20 players are considered about equal in talent.

Would you be happy with the Bengals trading back in the first round? If they do, I’d want them to trade up in Rounds 2 and/or 3 as 11 draft picks is already a lot and more than 11 picks is really just unnecessary.