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Assessing the value Bengals got in Trey Hill

The Bengals got a lineman who one analyst had ranked as a borderline top-100 prospect.

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NCAA Football: Georgia at Florida Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

With the 190th pick in this year’s NFL Draft, the Bengals landed their third offensive lineman of the draft in Georgia offensive guard Trey Hill.

The 6-3, 319-pound Hill first became a full-time starter in Athens during the 2019 season when he made 14 starts at center. As a true freshman the previous year, he played in all 14 games with starts in the final four at right guard.

This past season, Hill was limited to eight starts as he battled knee issues before shutting it down to have surgery on both knees to repair torn menisci. Had it not been for the injury, Hill could have snuck into the end of Day 2, but he now begins his pro career with more uncertainty as to where he’ll be this fall.

In terms of of where Hill was projected, some had him as a top-150 prospect, while others thought that Round 6 range was the correct value.

Looking ahead, Hill could challenge for playing time at center depending on the recovery of Trey Hopkins, who suffered a torn ACL in Week 17 of last season. Despite having that devastating injury happen so late in the season, Hopkins has progressed very well in his recovery while Billy Price has taken first-team reps at center this offseason.

Perhaps Hill can win a roster spot but contributing more at guard as a rookie, where guys like Michael Jordan and Xavier Su’a-Filo ‘should’ be on the hot seat, though second-round Jackson Carman is essentially guaranteed a roster spot, while both Price and Hopkins can play guard as well.

There’s no question Hill has his work cut out for him to make the final roster, so projecting him to the practice squad may be the safer bet heading into training camp.