Here is a round by round breakdown of some guys I think the Bengals might target. I will be adding my thoughts and breakdowns as time passes. If you think there is a guy I should add just leave a comment. If you like what you see follow me on twitter @codiki for daily updates and play breakdowns.
Kyle Fuller (CB) (VT)
6’0″ 190lb 4.49 dash 38.5 vert
For my money if he is there at 24 don’t pick up the phone, don’t listen to offers, run to the podium with his name on the card. He has NFL pedigree with both his brothers in the league, so he will have guidance from them. Has better game speed, with good recovery, then what his combine numbers would lead you to believe. Guys don’t blow by him in man coverage. He is a very willing tackler for run support. His character is top notch and was the captain of the Hokies. Instant impact guy; he is a “ball player,” throw out the numbers and put on some game tape on. You will drool over him, he can play football. Has some of the best turn and locate skills in this draft; always gets his hand on or near the ball. Put on the tape of Bama and GT and you will gas up your car to pick him up at his house if you are a Bengals fan. In GT first possession he takes on a Guard on a blitz, splits him, gets held, yet still dives and strips the QB. ( http://youtu.be/x_nAC4gisuA ) Fits the physical at their line system that the Bengals use and the AFC North demands. Fluid hips but his backpeddle can use some work. This guy WILL hit you in the mouth. He can get caught on a double move from time to time, but who doesn’t in college games.
CJ Mosley (ILB) (AL)
6’2″ 234lb 35.5 vert
He is the guy that could shake up the Bengals plans. Will they pull the trigger and get a guy to replace Rey Rey? A lot of people in Bengaldom might celebrate this pick. He is a sure tackler but can get caught upright in the wash and get eaten up by guards getting to the second level. His narrow build also contributes to this issue. Most of the time he is really good at avoiding guys in traffic though and weaves through the chaos well. Good speed, great in coverage one on one and decent pass rising ability. Not a huge hitter but that is why he is a sure tackler because keeps his knees bent and breaks down to tackle instead of loading up for the monster shots. See early blitz in video makes sure play instead of looking for big hit causes incomplete pass ( http://youtu.be/WvodZ06OXk8 ) lunch pail kind of player. Great instincts and ability to read the flat and cover guys over the middle. Takes great angles and rarely misses a tackle. Has some red flags with the shoulder, hip, and elbow injury which have caused him to miss some games. Shows up in big games and is the 2 time Butkus award winner. Never loafs on plays or gives up plays sideline to sideline. One thing that will likely cause him to slide if he does is that Bama players from defense haven’t faired well in the NFL most attribute that to being surrounded by talent in college and the devalued perspective on the position.
Darqueze Dennard (CB) (Mich St)
5’11″ 199lb 4.51 dash
Another guy I think the Bengals would be happy to take at 24 it seems because of his play style the ratings team have on him varies a lot. I honestly think the Steelers could take him at 15. He is a thumper looks for the big hit and gets it. Has great balls skills and goes from defense to offense very quickly in that regard so is great at returning ints. Reminds me a lot of Ed Reed when it comes to that he is patient and picks his way through traffic looking for openings. Good ball skills and competes for the ball and has strong hands. Great control in his backpeddle so he feet never seem tangled up (as we have all seen with Dre a few times). Great in man off and press so really fits what the Bengals prefer to do he hasn’t played much a zone coverage but neither do the Bengals. Stays in the WR back pocket and doesn’t try to bait the QB to throw. This costs him INTs but also make him more consistent which is really what is important. He can get a bit grabby when he get behind because he doesn’t have elite speed. He got away with it in college but I think in the NFL he will get pinged for PI a fair amount which can be crippling. See Nebraska game in video ( http://youtu.be/1_qv3NFwZkE ) He could slide to the Bengals or even further if his medical history doesn’t check out. He has had sports hernias twice that required surgery.
Jason Varrett (CB) (TCU)
5’9″ 189lb 4.38 dash 39 vert
Quick feet and turns fluid with his hips out of his peddle. Good initial burst out of his break. Has great instincts reaction time and recovery to mistakes. Don’t let his size fool you he is a junkyard dog when he does get beat will fight to get back and break up the play very good tenacity. Plays the run and is willing to come up to hit and make tackles in the run game. Does a good job of disguising when he is blitzing making him pretty effective at that see 2:45 mark of video ( http://draftbreakdown.com/video/jason-verrett-vs-lsu-2013/ ) Held his own against Odell who will be a top 15 pick. Fights for the ball in the air and does a great job of at least getting his hand in on plays to break them up. Great instincts to read run vs pass and also breaks quickly to help when the play isn’t at him. Because of his size he does miss at times diving low at the feet on bigger guys and can get caught up on blocks by bigger guys if they get their hands on him. Does have some injury concerns with his shoulder and the miles he has on him from 4 years at TCU. I have him right on the heals of Dennard and would have him ahead but I think him and Leon are best in the slot.
Bradley Roby (CB) (OSU)
5’11″ 195lb 4.39 dash 38.5 vert
If you watch tape from 2012 only this guy doesn’t make it out of the top 10 if you watch the Wisconsin game and most of 2013 he doesn’t go in the first 2 rounds. He is trending up right now with Fuller for teams through and I see that because of his high ceiling. His physical tools are unmatched in this CB class it is just a risk because on tape in 2013 he didn’t shine. He still excels in coverage and had 25 passes defended. Look at the game vs Allen Robinson and Penn St he gets worked all game long a simple screen he get shoved back and it goes for 10 yards. Not as physical as I think the AFC north demands seems to dive for the feet on every tackle. Maybe be was playing not to get hurt in 2013 who knows his tackling is not great in this years film though. See 22 second mark in video ( http://draftbreakdown.com/video/bradley-roby-vs-penn-state-2013/ ) his hips and backpeddle are good and he can cover the quicker slot WR no problem. Struggles with larger stronger WR especially on 50/50 balls. Gets held up on blocks at times so not great in run support. Additionally misses tackles because he dives at the feet instead of squaring up and driving through the hips. Seems selfish in his tackling goes for the highlight shot at times instead of the change the game play. See 10 seconds into clip has QB dead red blind side could easily go for a sack fumble instead he takes a shot at his melon. ( http://draftbreakdown.com/video/bradley-roby-vs-cal-2012/ ) Has character red flags with his suspension for ol’ Mary Jane and was removed from 1 game for targeting. I place him near Dennard but behind him and both back of Fuller. This guy is all about risk reward could be top 5 CB in league or continue his downward trend.
Stephon Tuitt (DT/DE) (ND)
Jimmy Ward (SS) (NIU)
5’11″ 192lb 4.48dash 38vert
He is A sure and willing tackler I don’t think he will be there for the Bengals pick in R2 and he would be a bit of a reach at 24 so he could be a target if the trade down or out of the first into the early second. He is the best at run support in the safety class and does a pretty good job of weaving/fighting through the wash on plays. Reads the play well and breaks on the ball instinctively. Has good recovery and is a smart player that uses his shoulder pad instead of the crown of his helmet. Looks for the ball and keeps his pad level low to avoid penalties, which will be important with the new trends of flags and suspensions in the NFL. He has a small frame but doesn’t play like he controls the middle and protects his turf he will lay the wood on you for sure. Did play a lower level of competition but was also not surrounded by as much talent. One red flag is also he coming off a foot injury so that will have to be watched in the days leading up to the draft. See source for video and pics 1st pass breakup picture breakdown 1:35 second 2:50 big tackle 7:15 and int with picture breakdown 7:50 http://draftbreakdown.com/video/jimmie-ward-vs-utah-state-2013/ )
Marcus Martin (C) (USC)
Lamarcus Joyner (CB/S) (FSU)
Cyrus Kouandjio (OT) (Bama)
Weston Richburg (C) (Col St)
Tre Mason (RB) (Auburn)
Carlos Hyde (RB) (OSU)
Antonio Richardson (OT) (Tenn)
Keith McGill (UT) (CB)
6’4″211lb 4.51 dash, 39 vert
Project type will need time but is a physical freak. All ah a Michael Johnson in 2009 type of pick at CB for this year. He is the best of the “big” corners but still needs to be molded to be an NFL CB. Has great leaping ability and length see the play breakdown where he is able to leap and break up a pass when he is 2 yards off the receiver as the ball arrives. Has such good athleticism he sometime gives too much cushion to the WR and gives up easy dig routes and back shoulder throws. His mechanics are not great so can get caught on blocks because his technique is bad or doesn’t notice the run play soon enough. He has great leaping ability and can break up plays even when he is behind the action. Played well against Shaq Thomas in the UCLA game. He is a press man guy that you would expect would play the run better but actually struggles there a bit. Needs refinement with footwork and play he is still raw and will need a year probably to play behind a vet and learn the ropes. See the pass break up play and int in the video and picture links. ( Pass breakup 1:40
Int 3:25 http://draftbreakdown.com/video/keith-mcgill-vs-ucla-2013/ )
Zach Mettlenberger (QB) (LSU)
Loucheiz Puriofy (CB) (FL)
5’11″ 190lb 4.61dash 35.5vert
This guy looks like a project that Zimmer could whip into shape and that Marv will want to gamble on can Gunther do it as well only time will tell. Was rated as high as the 2nd at times but has seen a huge drop in his stock as the process has gone on. Measured 3″ shorter then listed at Florida at the combine and didn’t run well. He looks quick on film but is not a willing tackler. Dances around the play and let’s others come up and make the hit. Gets caught on blocks and is out muscled and can’t get off to get to the play. He is great in coverage until the catch is made then his sketchy tackling can rear it’s ugly head. See 25 secs in bottom of screen. RB headed right at him and he tries to arm tackle and whiffs ( http://draftbreakdown.com/video/loucheiz-purifoy-vs-arkansas-2013/ )
I think if he slides to the 5th I am ok with him as a project and slot cover guy. The one thing you can’t teach is the willingness to hit and I don’t think he has that. He does have good mechanics as he gets into coverage, does a good job with his hips and can easily open them to stay with WR on deep routes. Good hands to intercept and has some playmaking after the catch and did some PR work at Florida. He will be drafted for his athleticism and to be coached up.
Jordan Zumwalt (ILB) (UCLA)
6’4″ 235lb 4.76dash 33 vert
He is a fiesty character and a tough competitor but he is basically the vanilla ice of football. The man that blew up Logan Thomas into the next century in the Sun Bowl. If you don’t know what I am talking about click here and enjoy ( http://youtu.be/w611j4vXtpk )
He is a strong tackler when he gets to the right spot he does take good angles most of the time. Has good knee bend and breaks down for tackles. Loads up for highlight real hits which also cause him to miss at times in the open field. He is a football player and lives to play the game that definitely shows and plays best when the lights are on the big stage. Not great in coverage limited range due to lack of speed and can get beat to the edge by quick backs and miss the point of attack. Does not have the strength and thump on most hits to drive back the bigger backs. In the pros he will likely be a special teams ace and fill in guy at linebacker. Has and can play all three positions in a pinch. The Bengals could look at him to be the Dan Skuta replacement.
Aaron Colvin (OK) (CB)
5’11″ 177lb 4.51 dash at senior bowl
Torn ACL probably out most of year 2-3rd round talent slipped due to injury at senior bowl.
Richard Sherman clone VERY physical corner not afraid to come up and make a tackle. Experienced with 36 starts in a power conference. Versatile played both CB and SS in college.
Aaron Lynch (DE) (USF)
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