It’s not uncommon for the Bengals to take multiple swings at the same position in one draft. In fact it happens every year. The most dramatic example is 1998 when they selected both Takeo Spikes and Brian Simmons in the first round. Just last year the Bengals selected two linebackers and two running backs.
Without any compensatory picks this year it is somewhat less likely, but still would make sense for a couple of positions. Let’s take a look at which positions the Bengals could choose to double dip at in this year’s NFL Draft.
Linebacker has been an issue for the Bengals for years. 2019 3rd Round selection Germaine Pratt showed a lot of promise once he cracked the starting lineup. Free agent Josh Bynes is a welcome addition, but the Bengals could still afford to add an athletic linebacker to pair with Pratt. The Bengals could use a Day 2 pick on that sort of player.
Outside of Pratt and Bynes, the Bengals only have Jordan Evans and Brady Sheldon on the roster. They could also use a Day 3 pick on a depth/development linebacker.
This is not including pass rushers. If the Bengals selected a 3-4 outside linebacker like Zack Baun at the top of the 2nd Round, I would fully expect them to take an additional off-the-ball linebacker.
A.J. Green and John Ross both have injury concerns and questionable contract situations after 2020. Despite Tyler Boyd‘s talent, without Green and Ross the Bengals could not get receivers open regularly in 2019.
Auden Tate could fill a role, but Alex Erickson probably won’t have a long-term role in this offense. That leaves the recently acquired Mike Thomas to compete with Stanley Morgan Jr., Damion Willis, DaMarkus Lodge, and Trenton Irwin. That is not a lot to work with.
With the deep pool of talent at the wide receiver position in this year’s draft, the Bengals could certainly take two dives into it. Taking a wide receiver on Day 2 and another on Day 3 would make a lot of sense.
Despite the recent free agent additions of Bynes and Thomas, the Bengals still have a major need at both linebacker and wide receiver. They also acquired offensive guard Xavier Su’a-Filo, but they could still look for help on the offensive line.
I doubt they add two interior offensive linemen or two offensive tackles, but one of each would make a lot of sense. When and if they add them will likely depend on availability and value.
The Bengals have last year’s 1st Round pick Jonah Williams as well as Bobby Hart and Fred Johnson at offensive tackle. They could certainly use depth, but they don’t seem to be urgently searching for a starter, despite the fact that many fans would like to see a change at right tackle.
The interior line is a little different. Trey Hopkins has established himself at center. Billy Price, Michael Jordan, Alex Redmond, and Su’a-Filo will compete for the starting guard positions. The Bengals are more likely to look for a starter in the draft at this position than at tackle.
With the Bengals’ limited draft capital, they might not take two players at one position, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see them select two linebackers, two wide receivers, or two offensive linemen.