If the first 8 picks are...
1. Browns- Myles Garrett DE/OLB Texas A&M*
2. 49ers- Solomon Thomas DE/DT Stanford*
3. Bears- Jonathan Allen DE/DT Alabama*
4. Jaguars- Leonard Fournette RB LSU*
5. Titans- Marshon Lattimore CB Ohio St*
6. Jets- Jamal Adams S LSU*
7. Chargers- Malik Hooker S Ohio St*
8. Panthers- Derek Barnett DE Tennessee
Who do you want?
Foster and it isn't close.
I vote Foster, too. I think he could be a tone setter/game changer on D. Just rattles people and that will fire guys up.
Interesting, too, he was the signal caller on D at Alabama. He doesn't have VB's football IQ but I think he's a very instinctive player.
Foster. His talent makes him worthy of the number 9 pick. His position is one of need, in my opinion. His position is also one that can see him on the field and impacting the game immediately. His position also provides some insurance against the upcoming free agency of an important veteran, and that's something the Bengals value (not to mention Burfict's health concerns).
I won't hate the Foster pick but I won't love it either. A top 10 pick should be squeaky clean, IMO, and he's nowhere close.
I like his play as much as the next guy, think he's the kind of tone-setter that I want (and will shout a woo-hoo if we take him), but:
1) He's had 3 shoulder surgeries. For a LB, that's got to be concerning.
2) He has had a number of concussions. Alabama said it was related to lowering his head when he tackled and they fixed the issue, but then he went on to have another one this season, so it wasn't fixed, or he's already got jello-sloshing around up there. Given that that's possibly the case with Burfict, it makes me very nervous to have two potentially all-pro LBs that never get to reach their potential for health reasons.
3) His most recent surgery will keep him from working out. The game tape is there, of course, but it's just another box you don't get to check.
4) Character flags. Sounds like the combine thing wasn't a big deal, but there are whispers elsewhere that he wasn't a squeaky clean guy. Again, nothing major, but you're talking top 10 pick here.
5) Played in front of an all-universe Dline. Between last year and this, Foster had about 8-9 top 60 NFL draft picks keeping him clean. Literally the most dominant DLine in many years of CFB. Again, this shouldn't be a ding, but it needs to be part of the accounting.
6) The Bengals have already stated that they love Vigil, and his strong suit is pass coverage, so he's going to be on the field 60-70% of the time. Burfict isn't coming off, so we talk about wanting instant impact with this pick but is the guy who comes off the field in passing situations, which is the new normal in the NFL, somebody who's going to maximize your instant impact?
7) 4-3 LB is one of the most devalued positions in the NFL, going by franchise salary rankings. If you take pass rushing (3-4 LBs) off of the list, it's literally at the very bottom (along with TE and Safety). If you have a chance to get a top guy who truly had franchise potential, wouldn't it make more sense to get one that provided you with better value at #9, especially when you usually pick in the 20s? Not to mention you have an option to extend that value by getting a good deal with that player for their next contract because you control the rights and can cut the deal a year or two early. If there were a glaring hole at the position it'd be a no-brainer, and you'd get great value (and indeed, maybe Burfict's knee or head (physically or mentally) has them worried about his longevity, which would really make it an easy pick...).
So that's what gives me pause.
I know some of you consider a WR to be a tertiary player, but if he's a guy with elite deep speed (John Ross) or an all-around true #1 (Corey Davis) he will not have a tertiary role. In fact, he'll have instant impact every time he's on the field, regardless of his stats. We've seen how much this offense sputters when no one threatens them over the top to keep teams honest with AJ. We've also seen how quickly our entire offense dies the minute AJ gets hurt. The right WR won't be an addition to our offense, he'll be a multiplier.
Now how about edge rush? In the scenario presented, the consensus top guys are gone. And yet we also know this is a decent draft, depth-wise, for Edge guys, most of whom will disappear in the 2nd round. If a trade down could net you another second rounder, you could use the first to get a top guy at a position of need (WR, OT, even DE (say, Taco Charlton later), and be able to address other positions later (including LB, which has depth needs at the very least).
The last thought I'll voice is the tantalizing possibility that the Bengals could look at a LB who is not just an off-the-ball 4-3 guy, but one who can play off the ball on run downs and then be a Joker pass-rushing LB on throwing downs. A guy who will be on the field every down now, not when one of our slated LB-starters gets hurt or demoted. IMO, Hassan Reddick and TJ Watt may both provide that. It'd be a risk because we don't have a precedent here, but frankly, all things being equal, I could see the argument for drafting either over Foster.
I wouldn't hate Dalvin Cook or John Ross, but think you could probably still get either at say 15.
You want a squeaky clean guy but you mention Ross?? His injury history is more worrisome than anyone in the draft.
Originally Posted by alleycat
You can possibly get Cook in the 2nd round now. Hard pass at 9.
Originally Posted by Bengals1181