With the Draft starting later this week who our Bengals may draft is still wide open and up for a lot of debate. Heck I think I have mocked a dozen players to the Bengals overall. With that in mind here are some scenarios to discuss, some I freely admit are more likely than others but all can be called plausible.
Scenario 1, the most likely scenario is the Bengals sit tight at 31 and pick the best available DB be is at Safety or Corner. With 5 Bengals in the secondary heading into the last year of their deals any draft discussion has to start here. I have mocked Safeties Hill, Brisker, Cine and Pitre all to is at different times, same at CB with Elam, Booth, Gordon and McQueary. Who knows who the Bengals favor but question I have is if the Bengals land a day 1 starting Safety do they then attempt a sign and trade if Bates on day 2 of the draft as you know this has to have been discussed by now between the Bengals and Bates' team.
Scenario 2, Bengals address the offensive line. I took heat for picking a LT but with the Bengals Duke Tobin not exactly giving Jonah a ringing endorsement the other day that has to still be an option, I have mocked Tyler Smith and Bernhard Raimann to us as they are usually LT'S 5&6 depending on which site you look at. Other guys I have mocked are Linderbaum and Zion Johnson on the interior, I prefer Johnson since his is more versatile but at 31 both would be solid picks.
Scenario 3 is slightly less likely but what if the Bengals have determined that they are going to have a hard time extending their LB's? If Nakobe Dean or Devin Lloyd are still there may the Bengals boost the LB depth and pull the trigger? I would think that they could keep both Pratt and Wilson but if for some reason they disagree either of these two would be a great pick.
Scenario 4 is our there but if the Bengals have had internal discussions and feel there is no chance they can pay the trio of Higgins Chase and Burrow top pay with the WR and QB markets booming, might the Bengals start planning for the potential loss of a guy like Higgins by drafting a Christian Watson?? Crazy I know but he could be the 3rd Flanker this year and go to the number two guy in 2023 if the Bengals pull off a trade of Higgins? I know this isn't likely but I am sure discussions have been had with the top wideouts all upwards of 25 and 30 million dollars a year. 50+ mil for the top 2 guys and close to that for Burrow just might be too much of the cap for 3 guys than the Bengals are comfortable with and could cause the Bengals to be able to re-sign guys they really want to keep.
Last Scenario is the wild card, I would not draft any position not listed above at 31, but what if the Bengals love a DE like Ojabo and feel like he is BPA when he gets back healthy and pulls the trigger there? I wouldn't do it with the money already committed to Hendrickson and Hubbard and Ossai being back but pass rush is king and it could happen.
This draft is going to be crazy, and our team can draft any number of good players at 31, or we all could stay up late on a work night to hear that the Bengals have traded out of round 1. I so cannot wait for Thursday to get here so all the speculation can finally end. Happy draft week Bengal fans Who Dey