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Bengals Bytes (2/7): Bengals need to keep an open mind with their first round pick

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Many people want the Bengals to take an offensive tackle at 12th overall, but should they be open to taking the best player available?

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NFL Combine - Day 2

The Bengals shouldn't have tunnel vision in the draft
Todd McShay’s latest mock draft is out and the Bengals add an offensive lineman in the first round. I’m fine with that if a lineman is the best player available. I don’t want them to have tunnel vision and only focus on their biggest weakness. Last year, they addressed their biggest need (defensive line) in rounds three and four. I elaborate on these thoughts on today’s podcast. Listen and subscribe to the Locked on Bengals podcast below.

Cincinnati Bengals: reasons to celebrate Super Bowl LII's result
As the Philadelphia Eagles celebrate their Super Bowl victory. Cincinnati Bengals fans and Cincinnatians overall have reasons to celebrate too. With many local connections to the Eagles worth giving a shout out to. Starting with the main Bengals connection to Super Bowl LII. That would be Eagles kicker Jake Elliott. When Elliott was drafted by the Bengals last year; it’s doubtful he envisioned ending his rookie season as a Super Bowl champion. Yet, that’s precisely what happened on Sunday night.

Cris Collinsworth slammed by Eagles' Chris Long, others on social media
The Catch Rule leaves gray area the NFL hopefully will look to clear up during the offseason, putting analysts often in unenviable situations of trying to sort it out. And Cris Collinsworth's attempts to do so during Super Bowl LII - likely because he swung and missed - aroused the ire of Philadelphia Eagles fans - and at least one player - on social media.

Did Bengals make a mistake by cutting Super Bowl kicker Jake Elliott?
The Eagles' win against the Patriots in the Super Bowl had to sting the Cincinnati Bengals, at least a little. They had to watch the kicker they took in the fifth round of the 2017 draft set records for someone else. Rookie Jake Elliott, who was plucked off the Bengals' practice squad this season, made a 46-yard kick to extend the Eagles' lead to eight points with 1:05 left to play, which ultimately sealed the game for Philadelphia. It also set the record for longest field goal by a rookie in the Super Bowl, breaking Elliott's own record of 42 yards earlier in the game.

Hobson's Choice: what do changes mean?
A big lift to get a note from one of the great datelines in Bengaldom. The sooner they can address those needs the better, but I would prioritize it as left tackle, nose tackle, safety, middle linebacker and depending what they plan to do with Russell Bodine, center. I’d prefer to wait on the MIKE backer and save the first two days of the draft for both lines. I think they’re OK at tight end with Kroft, Hewitt, C.J. Uzomah, and they liked what they saw from last year’s seventh-rounder, Mason Schreck, before he got hurt. You’re only as good as the big guys up front. That’s where this team has to go to get back on track.

TDBH: Shayne Graham walks away
When Shayne Graham said good-bye to the Bengals seven years ago, he never really said hello. But when he retires from football this week and asks to do it as a Bengal, he has experienced enough to do both in graciously stepping away with many more points (1,260 to be exact) than regrets (a Frank Sinatra few) as the Bengals’ most accurate kicker ever and the tenth of all-time, Bengals.com observes. “I at least know I learned from my mistakes,” says Graham today. “I can be proud and feel very blessed and fortunate with the opportunities I got in the first place.” In his last walk-off attempt, Graham offers compelling candor that takes more than a few guts. “One of the great regrets I have in my career is that I didn’t realize how good I had it in Cincinnati,” Graham says. “There was a time I fooled myself into thinking there were other things more important than what they were.

Former Bengals quarterback sentenced to prison for role in health care fraud | WKRC
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Former Bengals backup quarterback Shane Matthews has been sentenced to three months in prison for his minor role in a healthcare fraud conspiracy.

AFC North Bytes

Ravens’ biggest free-agency loss risks
he entire NFL is now immersed in the offseason following Super Bowl LII. All 32 teams have no further games on their schedule and instead, focus is now turning to free agency and the draft. While the Baltimore Ravens have been there a little bit longer than some, they have a number of free agents that could garner a lot of attention on the open market. In this article, I’ll break down the biggest flight risks the Ravens have this offseason.

Poll: Which QB do you want Browns to draft at No. 1 overall?
This one is simple: which of the presumptive top four quarterbacks do you want the Cleveland Browns to draft with the No. 1 overall pick? All four have been projected to the Browns in one mock draft or another over the past few weeks.

Random Bytes

Josh McDaniels Won't Accept Colts HC Job; Decides to Stay with Patriots
Josh McDaniels' tenure as Indianapolis Colts head coach is over after less than nine hours. McDaniels had a change of heart Tuesday and will remain with the New England Patriots. "After agreeing to contract terms to become the Indianapolis Colts' new head coach, New England Patriots assistant coach Josh McDaniels this evening informed us that he would not be joining our team," the Colts said in a statement. "Although we are surprised and disappointed, we will resume our head coaching search immediately and find the right fit to lead our team and organization on and off the field."

Nick Foles trade offers to come; Eagles need to say no
In the coming weeks, it’s likely a few general managers just doing their homework will pick up the phone, punch in a text message to Eagles GM Howie Roseman, or actually call him (yes, people in the United States still converse) and throw out this line: Any interest in a high pick or picks for Nick Foles? Run away, Howie. Drop the phone.

Report: Andrew Luck's Shoulder Injury Has Doctors Concerned, Could Need Surgery
Beyond their ongoing search for a head coach, the Indianapolis Colts could be facing another offseason of uncertainty with quarterback Andrew Luck. Per ESPN's Chris Mortensen (via Adam Schefter), Luck may need additional surgery after doctors expressed concern over his right shoulder.