Hopefully this pick cleans your palate after the Bengals drafted Drew Sample 52nd overall. The Bengals finally addressed their glaring need at linebacker by selecting Germaine Pratt out of NC State.
It was no secret that the Bengals had to address this position. The team parted ways with Vontaze Burfict this offseason, and even before that, the position failed to play up to NFL standards the past few seasons.
One place where the Bengals’ linebackers really struggled was in pass coverage. This is an area where Pratt should help right away. He was a former safety who was converted to linebacker. The Bengals haven’t had an athletic coverage linebacker like Pratt in a very long time, so this is a breath of fresh air.
The team will still likely be starting Preston Brown who the gave a three-year deal this offseason. Pratt will likely be competing with the likes of Nick Vigil and Malik Jefferson for nickel linebacker duties as well.
Pratt still is raw when trying to get through and around blocks since he is still relatively new at being a linebacker, but he makes up for that by being a sure tackler. It is also something that you can imagine he still has room to improve in as well.
Many fans are probably disappointed it took until the third round for the Bengals to address their biggest need going into the draft, but they get a good one here.
The Bengals’ remaining top draft needs are:
QB, DE, DT, LB
2019 Bengals Draft Picks
Day 2 NFL Draft schedule: 7 p.m. ET, Thursday, April 26: (7 minutes per pick for Round 2; 5 minutes for Round 3)
Here’s a link to the full seven-round NFL Draft order and live draft tracker!