The Bengals made their way through Round 4 selecting Miami’s Mark Walton. They followed up in Round 5 by taking Illinois State cornerback Davontae Harris and Virginia defensive tackle Andrew Brown.
Cincinnati wraps up their selections in Round 5 by taking Western Michigan cornerback Darius Phillips.
The Bengals have made it clear they wanted to shore up on their cornerback depth after taking Harris earlier. It’s interesting to see them take Phillips this soon, but the Bengals must have felt he brings something to the table that others don’t here.
Phillips is a bit of a contrast to the previous cornerback pick of Davontae Harris. While Harris is considered a height/weight/speed prospect with toughness, Phillips is considered a ballhawk defender who also has the ability to return kicks.
At Western Michigan Phillips handled kick return duties for four seasons and scored five touchdowns in that capacity. He also handled punt return duties his final two seasons as a Bronco. With Adam Jones departing from Cincinnati it makes sense that the Bengals would look for another punt return option and that’s likely where Phillips will have a chance to make an impact as a rookie.
As a corner he is considered by a lot of NFL scouts to be a nickel prospect so he could also be seen as an insurance policy for Darqueze Dennard being injured or not re-signing with the Bengals in the future.
How would you grade the Bengals’ 170th selection?
This poll is closed
The Bengals’ remaining top draft needs are:
Here’s a rundown of every pick the Bengals hold in the 2018 NFL Draft.
Bengals 2018 draft picks
NFL Draft schedule:
Rounds 4-7: 12 p.m. ET, Saturday, April 28: (Rounds 4-6 – 5 minutes per pick, Round 7 - 4 minutes per pick)
Here’s a link to the full seven-round NFL Draft order and live draft tracker!
What do you think of the Cincinnati Bengals’ final Round 5 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft?