Before the Bengals agreed to terms with cornerbacks Chidoe Awuzie and Mike Hilton, they were performing their due diligence on a top cornerback in this year’s NFL Draft.
Per Justin Melo of The Draft Network, Cincinnati recently held a virtual meeting for cornerback prospect Asante Samuel Jr.
#FSU CB Asante Samuel Jr. has recently met virtually with the #Bengals, #Lions, #Chiefs, #Rams, #Bears, #49ers, #Cardinals & #Chargers.— Justin M (@JustinM_NFL) March 15, 2021
Previously reported: #Packers, #Seahawks, #Falcons, #Dolphins, #Eagles, #Chargers, #Titans, #Saints, #Washington and #Cardinals. #NFLDraft
Samuel, a former four-star recruit out of St. Thomas Aquinas high school in South Florida, played his college ball upstate at Florida State. He was a rotational player as a freshman and started the last two seasons for the Seminoles. Per Pro Football Focus, Samuel allowed a passer rating of 65.68 in coverage and just three touchdowns compared to his four interceptions from 2019-2020. He is currently the fourth-highest cornerback on PFF’s board.
As you probably know, Samuel is the son of former NFL cornerback Asante Samuel, who made four Pro Bowls and won two Super Bowls during his 11 seasons in the league. Bloodlines are obviously on Samuel’s side, and at just 21 years old, he’s coming into the NFL with youth and past production as well.
The Bengals may not be looking to draft a cornerback high now that they’ve addressed the position heavily in free agency, so Samuel will probably go off the board while the Bengals are targeting other positions. But if they went strictly best player available at the top of the second round, they’d be hard pressed to draft someone better than Samuel, if he’s even there at all.