Even with the acquisition of Cordy Glenn earlier this month, it’s no secret that the Bengals are looking for more offensive line help as the NFL Draft approaches. Be it center, right guard and/or right tackle, Cincinnati will continue to bolster their big boys on offense.
One of the names continuously connected to the club in the first round is Notre Dame lineman, Mike McGlinchey. Well, it appears that the team has corroborated many mock drafts, as the team recently met with the Fighting Irish standout in South Bend.
At 6’8” and 312 pounds, McGlinchey has prototypical size for an NFL tackle. While his draft stock has varied from last September until this point, very few folks are questioning his first round status.
His college line-mate, Quinton Nelson, is largely-regarded as one of the best overall prospects in this year’s class. However, unlike McGlinchey, Nelson’s playing of guard (a non-premium position by NFL standards) may knock him down teams’ pecking order a bit.
However, there is some talk that McGlinchey can play inside, if completely needed. Despite his solid skill set and massive size, he needs to clean some things up early in his NFL career. Masking those potential inefficiencies by using him as a guard may help him in the initial stages as a pro and his potential flexibility on the line make him a reasonable target for the Bengals.
Still, that’s not to say that McGlinchey is totally unprepared to come in and start at tackle for a team on day one. Because of Notre Dame’s Independent status, in terms of conference affiliation, he did not receive any such all-conference honors. However, he was a consensus All-American in 2017.
In terms of McGlinchey potentially landing with the Bengals, the organization has a lot to figure out on their line. They used two high picks on Cedric Ogbuehi and Jake Fisher just three years ago and neither have panned out to this point. With Glenn in the fold as the starting left tackle, those two might be duking it out for the starting right tackle job in 2018.
Still, according to Lance Zierlein of NFL.com, his Notre Dame sources say that though McGlinchey played on the left side in college, he could be an All-Pro right tackle in the NFL. And, with defenses bringing pressure from various spots, the right tackle isn’t expected to just be a road-grader in the run game as in years past.
With the trade for Glenn, the Bengals have moved back from the No. 12 overall pick to No. 21 in the first round. Depending on how things play out, they could move up or back, given their flexibility with 11 picks in their pocket this year and offensive line could still very much be in play with that first pick.
In Mel Kiper, Jr.’s most recent mock draft, he had the Ravens taking McGlinchey at No. 16 overall, while pegging the Bengals to take the uber-athletic, albeit project-riddled Kolton Miller at No. 21. While nothing is set in stone at this point, given the fluidity of the talent at quarterback in this year’s draft, things could get wild in the first round. And, if he ends up falling to the Bengals at No. 21, the consensus is that McGlinchey is far more ready to play right now than Miller.