The Bengals don’t need a running back in this year’s draft, but they’re still doing their due diligence on potential Day 3 and undrafted prospects.
According to Eric Edholm, Bengals running back coach Kyle Caskey is meeting with Cincinnati Bearcats running back Mike Boone this week.
Mike Boone has worked out for the #Raiders, #Bengals, and #Colts, and posted a very strong #RAS at his pro day. Size may still turn some teams off, but he put up the best broad I have ever recorded for a RB in 3 decades worth of data. pic.twitter.com/3Jgzt8ybiL— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 8, 2018
Boone was rarely a featured weapon in UC’s spread offense during his college career. He also ended up splitting time with promising freshman Gerrid Doaks this past season, where Boone ran for 463 yards and four scores on 110 carries.
For his career, Boone carried the ball 420 times for 2,250 yards (5.4 ypc) and 24 touchdowns, though he never had more than 110 carries in a season. He also caught 65 passes for 596 yards (9.2 avg.) and one score.
NFL.com projects Boone to be a priority free agent, while NFL Draft Scout ranks him 472nd overall in this draft. Perhaps the Bengals could use one of their many Day 3 picks on Boone if they really like him, though it’s more likely he’d be an undrafted free agent target.
These pre-draft meetings can be used with prospects expected to go undrafted, allowing teams to build relationships with them in hopes of signing them when the draft ends.
Most likely, the Bengals are looking at Boone as someone to compete for the fourth running back spot next season. Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard will get most of the touches, and Brian Hill will likely be the third back.
That would leave Boone to battle Tra Carson and Jarveon Williams for the fourth running back spot. Carson, Williams, Mixon, Bernard and Hill are the only backs on the roster right now, so expect the Bengals to add 1-2 more before training camp opens.
Perhaps Boone will be one of them.