Friday, May 20, 2011

Johnny Gomes


Johnny Gomes must have some serious dirt on Dusty Baker. That's the only thing that can explain why he's still being marched out to Left Field to start for the Reds on most days. The Reds start a 3 game series against a red hot Cleveland Indians tonight. Gomes is starting and batting second. I can not believe this is true.

The logic behind this decision is that Gomes will see more fastballs with Joey Votto batting right behind him. That's fine, but Gomes can't hit a fast ball, he can't hit anything right now. Now only now, but there's nothing to show in Gomes' numbers that suggest he is going to get it going. It'd be one thing if he had career numbers that showed that he would hit better than that. He doesn't though, aside from a 6 week stretch at the beginning of last season he hasn't done anything.

It's brutal to watch him at the plate. When he swings he looks like he's going to fall he gets so off balance. Now he's hitting directly in front of the top RBI hitters on this team. That doesn't do any good for them if he never gets on base. He can't even make contact with the ball, much less get a hit. This is rediculous! Chris Heisey is a much better play all around. There's no question he's better in the field and he's hitting the ball better than Gomes is also.

I'm sick of Dusty Baker playing favorites. This is the major leagues and the best player should play period. Baker is seriously holding this team back by marching Gomes out to LF to start almost every day. Gomes shouldn't be playing period, not splitting time, not even spelling a player when they need a day off. Fred Lewis is a better option to come off the bench than Gomes is also. Gomes should be the last option to go out and play. This team would be much better with Heisey in the lineup and not Gomes.

Honestly Gomes is taking up a valuable roster spot. That home run that he hit is the worst thing that could've happened and I said it at the time. That just gave Baker an excuse to keep putting him out there despite how terrible he has been. Gomes is not producing and there are much more deserving players down in Louisville to get a spot on the 25 man roster. I know Gomes is a good guy to have in the clubhouse, and the guys all like him, but the bottom line in MLB is the best players get to be on the big league club and he isn't one of those players.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Baker to Platoon Left Field


Dusty Baker stated that he will split time among Chris Heisey, Fred Lewis, and Johnny Gomes in Left Field going forward. All I can say is it's about time. I like Johnny Gomes, but he looks lost at the plate right now. Honestly I don't think he should be on this team anymore. He hasn't been good at the plate since that hot start he had at the beginning of last season and there's nothing he's done in his career that says he is going to be good again.

Gomes is taking up a valuable roster spot and he can not produce. Dusty has been known to play veterans and stick with them way too long and he's done the same with Gomes. Bottom line is wins in the Major Leagues and the best players should play regardless of how long they've been in the league. Gomes is clearly not the best option out there. Heisey is head and shoulders above Gomes on defense and is a better hitter. The same with Lewis so far as he's played fairly well when given the opportunity.

Heisey is the future it looks in LF and with the youth movement going on with this team I think it's time to get him regular at bats and let him develop. Why not just let him play about two thirds of the games or at least every time it's a lefty on the mound and some games against righties. Let Heisey develop with Stubbs and Bruce out there. We have a young outfield that is talented and let them grow together. They have the talent to be one of the best outfields for years to come both in the field and at the plate. All three are excellent defensive players and not a lot of balls are going to drop with those three out there.

If they allow Heisey to develop out there, by the time Votto gets to the third year of his contract, they will have an excellent lineup top to bottom. It will look something like this:

1. Stubbs, CF
2. Phillips, 2B
3. Votto, 1B
4. Bruce, RF
5. Heisey, LF
6. Mesaraco/Hannigan/Hernandez/Grandal, C (2 of those 4)
7. Francisco, 3B
8. Janish/Cozart, SS

That's a dominant lineup top to bottom and you could possibly do a number of different things if Billy Hamilton is ready and can play SS. He would then move to lead off and Stubbs would bat 2nd and Phillips 4th where he has really excelled this year. That would move everyone after that down a spot and your 8th hitter would be Juan Francisco who has a ton of potential or whoever else they bring in to play 3rd base.

The future is bright for this team and it's time to start getting these younger players regular playing time. We don't know what Votto will do after his 3 year contract is up so we have to look at this thing as having a goal of winning a championship within the next 3 years and the best way to do that is get all these young hitters their lumps now so in 3 years they're ready to win it all. Don't get me wrong I don't think they would go downhill if Votto left because they have another big bat in the wings with Yander Alonso. With they way the Reds have their farm system set up and all the talented players they have they should be consistent winners for a long, long time. They are so loaded in the farm system that soon they aren't going to be able to keep all the talented players on the 40 man roster. That gives them the flexibility to make trades for a missing peice during the season and make a run at a World Series Championship. Possibly this year even going after Reyes or Felix Hernandez or both even. Could you imagine upgrading SS with Reyes with this team and adding an ace like Hernandez. The rotation would be Hernandez, Arroyo, Cueto, Bailey, and Wood. That's a sick rotation and a sick lineup with Reyes now playing SS. Here's what the lineup would be now with them in the mix:

1. Reyes, SS
2. Stubbs, CF
3. Votto, 1B
4. Phillips, 2B
5. Rolen, 3B
6. Bruce, RF
7. Hernandez/Hannigan, C
8. Heisey/Lewis, LF
9. Hernandez, P

If Chris Heisey is your 8th hitter then pitchers throughout baseball would fear playing the Reds. You wouldn't get a break anywhere in that lineup. All of those hitters can hit for good average and can take you deep at any given time, especially at GABP. I know I'm dreaming, but if they pulled off those trades, and they have the ammo to do it, they would be the favorites to win it all. That includes favored against the Phillies and that rotation and the Red Sox and their expensive lineup. This team would be comparable to the Big Red Machine.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Reds Sweep!


The sweep over the Cards this weekend is a huge confidence booster for our Cincinnati Reds. The Cards have had their number for years and even though the Reds were the better team last year they couldn't beat them. It was likely a confidence thing. The Reds likely were pressing when they were at the plate and trying to overthrow on the mound. When a team has your number for years like the Cards had the Reds number it's hard to get over that hump.

Now that they finally have it should be easier from here on out and maybe you start to see the Cards pressing a little. The Reds atleast now know they have it in them and can beat this team every time they play them.

They still have a brutal stretch coming up though after the 2 game sets with the Cubs and Pirates this week. They have to go to Cleveland, to Philly, and to Atlanta. They also have a series with the Brewers in there somewhere. That's 20 games in 20 days including the three they just played against St. Louis. Heading into this stretch I said 12-8 would be an excellent record at the end of these 20 games. After the sweep this record should definitely be within reason, if not better.

This Reds team is good enough to play with anyone. Honestly I think the Brewers are going to be the closest competitor in the division as they will be better than what they've shown. In the end though I think the Reds run away with this division and that's where the play with anyone is going to come into play. Are the Reds ready to contend for a World Series Championship right now? Can they beat a team like Philly in a best of seven series with that starting rotation? The answer will be if the Reds pitching can come even close to matching the Phillies starting pitching, then yes.

For now though this is the Reds division to lose and that feels good. The Cardinals are on the decline and with all the young, good talent, they should own this division for a long time. The ownership and Walt Jocketty have done a great job of building the farm system and having them develop home grown talent. It's an exciting time to be a Reds fan as it looks like they'll be on top for a long, long time.

Reds the Better Team


The title says it all. What a weekend to be a Reds fan. Today they finished off the sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals. The game ended up being a little closer than I had hoped due to the Chapman fiasco, but it doesn't matter if you win by an inch or a mile. This was the sweetest sweep the Reds have had since the 1990 World Series.

I think there's really no question that the Reds are the better overall team, but for some reason they haven't been able to win a series against this team much less sweep them. This sweep is huge because now the Reds know that they can beat the Cardinals and I think you'll see more of the same against them the rest of this season. Comparing the two teams, the only aspect of the game the Cardinals might have the edge is hitting. Even that is very close though. The Reds are better defensively, better starting pitching, and have a better bullpen. Every year in baseball things seem to average or even out. McClellan is not a dominant starting pitcher, he's an average pitcher that got out to a hot start and now you'll start to see him trend back towards that plus 4 ERA that he's had for his career. Holliday and Berkman aren't career .350 plus hitters. They started out hot and now they'll trend back down. The only thing is Pujols will start to trend back up.

On the Reds side, the starting pitching got off to an atrocious start, but now they're trending back to where they should be. Most of them are too young to really have a career average you can look at and say this is where they'll end up. Jay Bruce is better than how he started and now you're seeing him trend upward. The point being is the Reds got off to a start that isn't as good as they really are and the Cardinals got off to a start that's better than what they really are. With that happening the Reds still stayed right there with St. Louis and now they have passed them and really I don't expect them to look back again.

I think the Cardinals are on the decline and the Reds are on their way up. The players of the teams and the fans of the respective teams are realizing this as well. On the MLB message boards Cards fans are bitter and are starting to realize that their run of owning the NL Central is over and the Reds are young, up and coming, and will be running things in this division for a while now.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

2012 NFL Mock Draft


Here's a mock draft for 2012. The order is based on my post draft power rankings and it includes a trade of Carson Palmer to the Seattle Seahawks for their first round pick and Chad Ochocinco to the Washington Redskins for their second round pick. That second trade may be a long shot but they are in desperate need of a playmaker at WR and were going to give a 1st and 3rd a couple years ago.

1. Washington Redskins- Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

The Redskins win the Andrew Luck sweepstakes by going 2-14 next season. They have no QB and no playmakers at WR and play in a division where everyone else is good.

2011 1st Round Pick: Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue

2. Carolina Panthers- Alshon Jeffrey, WR, South Carolina

The Panthers got their franchise QB now they have to get him some playmakers at WR for him to have any chance at all to be good.

2011 1st Round Pick: Cam Newton, QB, Auburn

3. Denver Broncos- Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State

The Broncos were terrible on defense at stopping the run last season. So what do they do in the draft? Opt for the undersized pass rusher instead of the versatile DT. That will have them picking in the top 5 again.

2011 1st Round Pick: Von Miller, DE/OLB, Texas A&M

4. Arizona Cardinals- Matt Kalil, OT, USC

The Cardinals have faith in Levi Brown and he's one of the worst LT's in the NFL. I think after their QB gets beat up this year they'll realize they need to upgrade. Kalil has the talent to be a number one overall pick in next year's draft.

2011 1st Round Pick: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU

5. Tennessee Titans- Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

People have been mocking the Titans a 1st round CB for years and they still haven't taken one. With the pass happy Colts and Texans in their division they need some good cover guys.

2011 1st Round Pick: Jake Locker, QB, Washington

6. Buffalo Bills- Matt Barkley, QB, USC

Ryan Fitzpatrick is a servicable QB, but if you're going to compete with the Patriots and Jets in that division you need to have more than servicable out of your QB.

2011 1st Round Pick: Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama

7. Cincinnati Bengals- Jonathon Martin, OT, Stanford (from Seattle for Palmer)

The Bengals had a good 2011 draft. Now they need to build up front on both sides of the ball. With two first round picks and two second round picks they should be able to do that. Martin can come in and immediately be the starting tackle on either side. If Andre Smith doesn't play well this year his time at OT is over and it's time to move him to Guard where he'd be better suited not playing in as much space. This would give the Bengals an excellent line that looks something like this: Whitworth, Boling, Cook, Smith, Martin. Or Martin on the left and Whit on the right.

2011 1st Round Pick: AJ Green, WR, Georgia

8. Minnesota Vikings- Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina

The Vikings have good players, but the QB issues will have them picking this high. Coples is the best player available and would give them an elite pass rushing duo with Coples and Jared Allen. With Aaron Rodgers in that division that would be a good idea.

2011 1st Round Pick: Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State

9. Cleveland Browns- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

The Browns stockpiled picks by trading basically Julio Jones. We'll see how it works out for them. They'll have to suffer through another season with no big playmakers at WR, but will put some peices in place and likely land a good WR in the 1st next year.

2011 1st Round Pick: Phil Taylor, DT, Baylor

10. Miami Dolphins- Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma

The Dolphins will finally realize that Chad Henne isn't any good. He wasn't very good at Michigan and hasn't improved in the NFL.

2011 1st Round Pick: Mike Pouncey, OC, Florida

11. San Francisco 49ers- Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

The Niners weren't able to land Patrick Peterson and didn't think highly enough of Prince Amukamara. That leaves them still needing CB help. They also may still need a QB and I wouldn't be suprised if they pull off a blockbuster trade to get Luck.

2011 1st Round Pick: Aldon Smith, DE, Missouri

12. Jacksonville Jaguars- Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska

The Jaguars secondary is a mess and they have to face Peyton Manning and Matt Schaub twice a year. NUFF Said!

2011 1st Round Pick: Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri

13. Oakland Raiders- Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa

The fans in Oakland may kill Al Davis if he takes another Tackle from Iowa. But Reiff is the best OT available here at a position of huge need.

No 1st Round Pick

14. Cincinnati Bengals- Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

I think the Bengals franchise tag Cedric Benson and he's here one more season. Then RB becomes a need. Richardson has a rare blend of power, size, and speed like Adrian Peterson. With the revamped line by taking Jonathon Martin he should come in and succeed immediately. This would give the Bengals their own vision of the Big 3 Richardson, Dalton, and Green. Like the Cowboys trio of Emmitt, Aikman, and Irvin. Okay maybe I'm getting a bit ahead of myself.

2011 1st Round Pick: AJ Green, WR, Georgia

15. New York Giants- Vontaze Burflict, LB, Arizona State

The Giants have been known for good defense, usually starting with the line. Well the line is still there but the LB core has had some players retire and leave and needs to be restocked.

2011 1st Round Pick: Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska

16. St. Louis Rams- Jeff Fuller, WR, Texas A&M

The Rams didn't get their future number one WR to go with young star QB Sam Bradford. This year there should be at least 4 first round WR's so they should be able to land one.

2011 1st Round Pick: Robert Quinn, DE, North Carolina

17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Cliff Harris, CB, Oregon

I love what the Bucs have done totally rebuilding that defensive line over that past two drafts. Now they have some CB trouble though with Talib getting arrested again.

2011 1st Round Pick: Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa

18. Dallas Cowboys- Donte Paige-Moss, DE/OLB, North Carolina

The Cowboys had a good draft in 2011, but they didn't address their pass rush. Here they get the best tweener pass rusher in this draft.

2011 1st Round Pick: Tyron Smith, OT, USC

19. Chicago Bears- Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State

The Bears first two picks were excellent for how late they were and addressed big needs. However I thought they needed to do more on the offensive line, it was so inconsistent in 2010.

2011 1st Round Pick: Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin

20. San Diego Chargers- Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama

The Chargers didn't address that horrible pass rush at all in the draft. Every since they made Shawn Merriman quit taking steroids they've needed a pass rusher and Larry English didn't work out.

2011 1st Round Pick: Corey Liuget, DT, Illinois

21. Detroit Lions- Nate Potter, OT, Boise State

If Matthew Stafford gets hurt again this year due to poor line play the Detroit coaches are going to catch some heat for not taking an offensive lineman early in the 2011 draft.

2011 1st Round Pick: Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn

22. Baltimore Ravens- Brandon Jenkins, OLB, Florida State

The Ravens are pretty much loaded on defense, but they could use an upgrade at OLB across from Terrell Suggs.

2011 1st Round Pick: Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado

23. Houston Texans- Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma

The Texans had a good defensive draft this year. Now it's time to get a WR to take some of the pressure off of Andre Johnson and give Schaub another weapon to throw to.

2011 1st Round Pick: JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin

24. Cleveland Browns- Devin Taylor, DE, South Carolina

The Browns are switching to a 4-3 defense and don't really have any good pass rushers that put their hand on the ground. They did draft Sheard in the 2nd round at DE, but need more than that.

2011 1st Round Pick: Phil Taylor, DT, Baylor

25. Philadelphia Eagles- Jared Crick, DT, Nebraska

Andy Reid loves to draft people in the trenches early which is why the Eagles are consistently in the playoffs. Winning football starts up front.

2011 1st Round Pick: Danny Watkins, OG, Baylor

26. Indianapolis Colts- Monti Te'o, LB, Notre Dame

The Colts have never really had that dominant LB that can lead a defense. With their troubles stopping the run this would be a good pick that would give them a leader on defense for the next ten years.

2011 1st Round Pick: Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College

27. Kansas City Chiefs- Janoris Jenkins, CB, Florida

The Chiefs have done a nice job drafting and have a team full of young good talent. They could use some help at CB across from Flowers.

2011 1st Round Pick: Jonathon Baldwin, WR, Pittsburgh

28. New York Jets- Micheal Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

The Jets have a lot of free agents at the WR position. I doubt Holmes and Edwards are both back in NY this year.

2011 1st Round Pick: Muhammad Wilkerson, DE, Temple

29. Pittsburgh Steelers- Knile Davis, RB, Arkansas

Who knows what will happen with Mendenhall with the bin Laden comments. Even if he stays they need another back.

2011 1st Round Pick: Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio State

30. New England Patriots- Micheal Brewster, OC, Ohio State (from the Saints)

The Pats current starter at Center has stated this will be his last year. So they go out and get the best OC in the draft.

2011 1st Round Pick: Nate Solder

31. New England Patriots- Andre Branch, DE, Clemson

Will the Pats use both of their first round picks? Probably not. But they do need an upgrade at DE every since they traded Richard Seymour.

32. Green Bay Packers- Omar Bolden, CB, Arizona State

Charles Woodsen is getting up their in years. They could also use an upgrade at the Nickel CB position for now. Any rookie is going to have a tough time being a starter in GB.

2011 1st Round Pick: Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State

2nd Round

33. Cincinnati Bengals- Marcus Forston, DT, Miami

This would be perfect for the Bengals. A big, run stuffing DT with a first round grade with the first pick in the 2nd round, for Chad Ochocinco. It's a long shot, but Washington would like to overpay for Chad and I think they will to make sure they get him to get a weapon for Andrew Luck that's a veteran, not a new rookie WR. They'll take one in the 1st next year.

This would give the Bengals a D line of Dunlap, Peko, Forston, and Micheal Johnson or Odom. Forston is 310 lbs and between he and Peko the Bengals would be tough to run up the middle against. This would basically give the Bengals 3 first round picks and if they get Martin, Richardson, and now Forston the future may bring Vince Lombardi Trophies. This is the way you build a team, by building up front. The skill players are in place.

34. Carolina Panthers- Zach Brown, LB, North Carolina

The Panthers have holes all over their roster so why not take one of the top players available at a position they definitely need help.

35. Denver Broncos- Kenny Tate, SS, Maryland

The Broncos secondary was a mess as well as the rest of their defense. They got Rahim Moore for FS now they need a SS.

36. Arizona Cardinals- Vinny Curry, DE/OLB, Marshall

The Cardinals still need pass rushers. Remember when they brought in Joey Porter to try to fill that position last year. HaHa

37. Tennessee Titans- Micheal Egnew, TE, Missouri

The Titans have a young QB now in Jake Locker, a young QB's best friend is a good TE that can catch the ball.

38. Buffalo Bills- Mohamed Samu, WR, Rutgers

If the Bills take Barkley they'll need to get him some weapons at WR besides Steve Johnson. Lee Evans isn't playing well anymore.

39. Seattle Seahawks- Matt Reynolds, OT, BYU

If Seattle trades for Carson Palmer they better take care of the rest of that offensive line because he can't move at all and he's afraid in the pocket. you better have the best line in the NFL if you want him to succeed.

40. Minnesota Vikings- LaMicheal James, RB, Oregon

One of the big things the Vikings were missing was Chester Taylor, that reliable 3rd down back. James can play that same role in Minnesota.

41. Cleveland Browns- Travis Lewis, LB, Oklahoma

The Browns have done a decent job building that defense so far, but they need different types of players to play a 4-3.

42. Miami Dolphins- Tydreke Powell, DT/DE, North Carolina

Another defensive player from the Tar Heels. The Dolphins haven't addressed that defensive line in a few years.

43. San Francisco 49ers- Nick Foles, QB, Arizona

If the Niners don't trade up for Luck I'd look for them to get multiple QB's in there to compete for the starting job. I think Foles would be the best on their roster.

44. Jacksonville Jaguars- Jake Bequette, DE, Arkansas

The Jags pass rush is less than stellar. I think next year's draft they go CB and DE in the first two rounds.

45. Oakland Raiders- Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia

The Raiders are going to lose or already have lost Nmandi Asomaogh. They'll need to find a replacement for him or an upgrade at the 2nd CB spot.

46. Cincinnati Bengals- Ray Ray Armstrong, FS, Miami

The Bengals finally draft a Safety that has coverage skills. I wish they would've taken Quinton Carter in the 3rd in the 2011 draft. He can cover and would've been able to contribute quicker than Dontay Moch. Don't get me wrong I love Moch's upside with that speed he has and possiblities with him pass rushing.

If Reggie Nelson pans out then the Bengals could go with another defensive lineman here or Devier Posey as a possible number two WR if Simpson doesn't play well this year.

Friday, May 6, 2011

3 In A Row For The Reds



The Reds defeated the Chicago Cubs today to win their 3rd straight game. The final score was 5-4. They jumped out to an early lead due to Jay Bruce's 3 run home run in the fourth inning. Don't look now but Jay Bruce's bat is starting to come to life. If Jay Bruce is hitting the ball well the Reds lineup becomes awfully tough to get through. When he isn't hitting it doesn't seem very tough. That's the difference one player can make, especially if that player is supposed to be one of the corner stones of your team.

That puts the Reds two games over .500. I like the comments Dusty Baker made yesterday. That was even if you aren't playing your best ball, if you hang around the .500 mark when you finally do start to make your push you distance yourself from that mark. If you allow the less than stellar play to get you down and you drop below that mark then when you finally do make that push you are doing it just to get back to the .500 mark. I think 92 wins or close to it will be enough to win the division this year, or at least get a wild card spot. There aren't really any dominant teams in the National League other than maybe the Phillies. So I don't think there's going to be any division in which the 2nd place team wins 97/98 games.

True the Reds aren't playing that good right now, but they are hanging around and this is a resilant team that if you let them stay in the race for the playoffs, I think they'll get the job done in the end and get in. Their play is going to get better. The starting pitching is going to get it's era back to where it was last year, these things always tend to even out so likely we'll see a period where they are lights out on the mound that is as long as their mediocre to bad start has been.

It doesn't even seem like the offense has been playing very well either and they are 2nd in the NL in runs scored. I think once this offense gets going like they are capable of you will see them as the top hitting team in the league.

Anyway the Reds have one 3 in a row and it all started with a 9th inning rally 2 days ago against Houston. They only had recorded one hit the entire game against someone making their major league debut. The last time the Reds had that kind of rally was opening day against the Brewers and that lead to a five game winning streak to start the season. Hopefully the Reds are in the midst of an even longer winning streak right now. The key is once a winning streak comes to a close to consistently play winning baseball. The goal should be to take the season by series and to go out and win two of three in every series.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Fantasy 2012 Mock


Here's a 2012 mock with the Bengals trading Carson and Chad and getting an extra 1st and 3rd round pick. I have them trading Carson to Arizona and Arizona getting the 4th overall pick next year.

4. Matt Kalil, OT, USC: This guy is so good he had Tyron Smith the ninth overall pick in this year's draft playing RT and he projects to be a LT in the NFL. Kalil would be my LT from day one I'd move Whit to RT and the line would look like this: Kalil, Boling, Cook, Smith, Whitworth. That's possibly the best offensive line in the NFL and Dalton would have all day to throw and the RB would have big holes to run through.

14. Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama: I've said this guy could be Adrian Peterson special. He has a rare blend of power, size, and speed. This would give the Bengals their own version of the big 3 with Dalton, Richardson, and Green. Add to that Shipley, Gresham, Simpson, and Caldwell and you have the best young group on offense in the NFL. Plus if they draft Kalil and have that line above in place you could be talking about the best offense in the NFL period.

2nd Round. Brandon Thompson, DT, Clemson: This would add an excellent one gap penetrator to stuff the run next to Domata Peko. Put Dunlap and Micheal Johnson on the ends of that line and you have a very good front four. With the LB's and the duo at CB in place the defense could be back into the top five again. Add that to the explosive offense listed above and you have one of the favorites to win the Super Bowl. No team in the NFL would have a better offense and defensive balance.

2 3rd round picks: I'm not going to name individual players at this point in the draft because you don't know who'll be rated here or earlier for that matter but it's easier to project the top players right now. The positions I would go after here would be CB and Safety. Sure up that secondary. Really though if you land the players above at this point you are able to take the best player available. That means if there's a solid number two WR still available or someone as talented as Micheal Johnson is who was available in the 3rd you pull the trigger on them. Or a multi purpose player like a Randall Cobb or someone.

College Football Players to Watch


The 2011 NFL Draft is over but there is still draft fever due to the Bengals having one of the best drafts in the NFL. It has taken this organization that looked to be going down the toilet with it's franchise player refusing to play for them ever again. Now they have drafted what most think is sure to be a star WR in the NFL and a QB that was great value and seems to be a perfect fit for Jay Gruden's West Coast Offense. Oh by the way he's the 2nd winningest QB in college football history and did this at TCU, not Texas, Ohio State, Florida, Oklahoma, or USC.

Everyone's heard enough about this draft so here's some players to watch that could be of interest for the Bengals for next year's draft. Cedric Benson is a free agent right now and there's a possibility he might not be back in 2011, much less 2012. Runningback is almost certainly going to be a need heading into the 2012 draft and may be the biggest need. That said it's not the most valuable position on the football field anymore. Only someone they believe will be a star should be taken with a first round pick. Usually the line is more important than the back. Speaking of offensive line I say give Andre Smith one more year to prove himself. It's possible a move to Guard may be needed for him to be successful, he may be better when not in space. If that's the case that's fine, he may end up being an elite Guard if he run blocks like he did at Alabama. Either way Guard or Tackle will likely be a need, big time in 2012 and I never have a problem with the Bengals using a 1st round pick on either line. Also the rush defense wasn't up to par last year and they didn't do much to improve that area so far. A big stud DT could be in order early in the 2012 draft. So likely the Bengals biggest areas of need in 2012 will be RB, Offensive Line, and DT next year and here's some players who could be the newest Bengals come April 2012.

Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama: Richardson could be the next Adrian Peterson with his rare blend of power, size, and speed. I believe the Bengals will be picking in the middle of the round if they don't make a trade. This could be a prime area to get Richardson and have their star RB of the future. If they get him they could have their own version of the big 3, Dalton, Green, and Richardson. That would be similiar to Aikman, Emmit, and Irvin and hopefully bring championships like those 3 did for Dallas.

Knile Davis, RB, Arkansas: Davis is a huge back that projects to go mid to late 1st round as of right now. He could raise his stock or lower it depending on how he does at Arkansas without Mallett this year. A bit of a down year from the Razorbacks could cause him to slip to the 2nd. I doubt it though this guy is too talented and looks to be the bell cow back every team in the NFL needs except Green Bay apparantly.

Daniel Herron, RB, Ohio State: Boom Herron could be a 2nd round guy, especially since he's suspended the first five games of the season next year. He doesn't have great size, but would be good enough with split carries from Bernard Scott and he does run tough inside with good burst to get outside and break one.

Matt Kalil, OT, USC: If the Bengals are in position to get Kalil that means they are picking early again and the offensive line struggled. If this is the case Kalil has NFL bloodlines and is an elite prospect to play LT, the most important position besides QB. I know the Bengals have Whit, but Kalil will be better and Whit has the versatility to play about anywhere. They could move Whit to LG, have Boling at RG, and if Andre Smith shows up to play have the best offensive line in the NFL. If the Bengals are picking early enough to get him they should definitely pull the trigger on this one. You don't pass on a guy who had the athletic Tyron Smith playing RT because Kalil is so good. By the way Smith was the 9th pick in this year's draft that shows how good Kalil is.

Jonathon Martin, OT, Stanford: It seems like all the top OT prospects play out west this year. Martin is a big, tall, athletic OT with the long arms and good mobility required to play LT in the NFL. Martin protects the blind side of the top prospect in college football in about a decade, Andrew Luck. Talk about pressure, could you imagine if he let someone get by and do some big time damage to Luck. If he can perform under that pressure this year he will be a top 15 pick and worthy of being taken by the Bengals as someone I'd feel good about protecting Dalton.

Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa: Reiff is an excellent pass blocker with unlimited upside. He has the frame to bulk up more and become a more effective run blocker as well. As far as his pass blocking goes he's probably NFL ready to play OT right now. He projects to be a middle first round pick.

There could be as many as six OT's taken in the first round next year as of today's projections. That number could increase or decrease. Also when one position is that loaded teams sometimes wait thinking they can fill another position and still come back and get a quality player at that position in the next round. With so many good O line prospects here's the names of some others that will go day one or early day two in next year's draft. Nate Potter, Boise State; Mike Adams, Ohio State; Micheal Brewster, Ohio State; Cordy Glenn, Georgia; Matt Reynolds, BYU; Kelechi Osemele, Iowa State; That's six more names to go with the other three for a total of 9. Not all will play OT in the NFL, but anymore every position on that line is important. It wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility for all 9 to go in the 1st round. At minimum all 9 getting first round grades, but i doubt a third of the round goes to O line. Either way there will be plenty of good players to pick from on the O line next year so it's a good year for it to be a need.

On the defensive side of the ball DT will likely the biggest need area with Safety following and you can also never have too many good CB's. Especially with J Jo being injured as often as he is injured. DT is the thinnest and if the run defense is exposed again that could be the biggest need and with not as many good DT's on the board for now as OT's that may be the way to go in the first next year, then come back and still get a quality offensive lineman in the 2nd. Also the Bengals very well could have two first round picks if they deal Carson Palmer this offseason. Also they deal Chad and I bet they have five picks in the first three rounds two firsts and either two seconds or two third round picks. That would be excellent. Could you imagine if they pulled that off and had made the Atlanta trade. They could be looking at 3 first round picks, 2 second round picks, and two third round picks. That would've been amazing, but I'm glad they stuck at 4 and got AJ Green, I don't think the players they would've gotten with Atlanta's picks are difference makers like Green is. They still would've needed a WR and that WR would've been someone like Titus Young or Hankerson, not bad but no AJ Green and they would've taken Dalton with the first round pick at 27. So it would've been Dalton and Young/Hankerson/Cobb one of those 3 instead of Dalton and Green. Yeah they would've had Atlanta's first next year but that will likely be late and I think they'll get Arizona's first next year for Carson Palmer which will be a top 15 pick I bet.

Anyways here's the defensive players to watch, sorry for the rant.

Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State: Worthy is the best DT in this draft class and will be a difference maker in rushing the passer immediately. He is very good at getting after the passer and would provide the Bengals with something they've been missing for years, an interior pass rush. He is a bit undersized though and the Bengals need a run stuffer.

Jared Crick, DT, Nebraska: Most give Crick a first round grade, his exposure has come from playing next to Ndamukong Suh. Crick is a good player, but a bit overrated in my opinion and I wouldn't take him in the first.

Brandon Thompson, DT, Clemson: Thompson could be a guy had in the 2nd that is a one gap penetrator. He would be a perfect fit in the Bengals defensive scheme and does a great job at stopping the run in the backfield. This is a guy to keep an eye on if the Bengals struggle against the run.

Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina: As of now this is the top pass rusher in this draft. Many mocks that have the Bengals picking 4th again have them taking Coples. An elite pass rusher across from Carlos Dunlap would be a good thing, lets just hope they're not picking high enough to get him. If they are Andrew Luck may be someone needed.

Devin Taylor, DT/DE, South Carolina: Taylor is a good pass rusher and run defender an all around player. He could end up being the most versatile D lineman in this draft, tho most think his best fit is a DE in a 3-4. I think he's going to be a better version of Cameron Heyward who could play DT in a 4-3.

Kenny Tate, FS, Maryland: The best Safety in this draft. I think the Bengals still need a Safety that is good in coverage. We'll see about Reggie Nelson. If they struggle in that area you could see them take Tate next year.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Draft Fever


Now that the 2011 Draft is over, lets take a look ahead at some of the players the Bengals could target in 2012 and the strategy they should start looking at as far as working the draft next season.

As far as the projected needs the Bengals have you would have to think that Runningback, Offensive Line, and Defensive Line will be the three biggest. That is if they are able to keep Joseph and Hall to give them that elite CB tandem. If not that becomes one of the biggest needs as well.

At Runningback I have four players currently in my top 50 at that position. Of course college player rankings will change big time by next season, but that could mean more or it could also mean less depth at the position. The two big names are Trent Richardson and Knile Davis for now. They currently are 11th and 15th on the Big Board and both are projected to go off the board in the top 25 picks. Lamicheal James looks to be a borderline 1st/2nd round projection and Cyrus Gray a mid second rounder. This position could be a need this year if the Bengals do not get Benson resigned. Either way you would have to think it will be a one year deal if they do retain him and next April the Bengals will be in the market for a RB.

That said RB is no longer a high value position in the NFL. I'm a believer that a good offensive line makes a RB, not the other way around, for the most part. There are special players such as Adrian Peterson and Chris Johnson, but they are the exception. The only thing is there could be one of those special players in this draft in Trent Richardson. He has a rare blend of size, power, and speed like AP and CJ2K. If he shows this year at Alabama that he is that elite guy then I would have no problem if he was the Bengals pick. Especially if they are picking in the middle of the round like I expect they will. If he doesn't show that now that he is THE GUY at Alabama then the best strategy would be to wait. Good RB's can be had later in drafts, especially with the way they slide due to teams not valuing that position anymore.

If Andre Smith still doesn't show anything again this season then it's time to declare him a bust and either move him to Guard or move on from him entirely. I personally would like them to move him to RG for Bobbie Williams. I think he can be more effective when not in space. Right now that's my most perferred route is to do that and draft an OT in the first round next season. The position is absolutely loaded with four players in the top 15, six that could possibly go in the 1st round and seven in the top 50 and maybe more than that. There is the big four OT's with Kalil, Martin, Reiff, and Adams. If the Bengals are sitting around 15 in the draft order they should be able to get one of those four. If not they can always go DT, get some help against the run, and take the OT in the second round. Many of the 2nd round OT's next year could very well be 1st rounders in any other year that the position isn't quite as stacked.

With a new franchise QB, possibly a new RB, and a pleathora of young weapons at WR and TE if the line is built right this offense could be a top 5 offense in the NFL for years to come. No team has a better young group of WR's/TE's than the Bengals do with Green, Simpson, Shipley, and Gresham. If Dalton pans out at all this offense should score 25 plus points a game with a decent offensive line.

Now the defense was dominant in 2009, but in 2010 it didn't play so well. I expect that it gets back to being good with Zimmer at the helm, but they need some more players up front to either develop or some early round talent through the draft. The peices are in place for the most part. One area they did struggle was against the run last year. Peko needs some help on the interior of the defensive line. They need another one of those jumbo run stuffers in there next to him. Usually the only way to get one through the draft is to use your first round pick if you want someone that can move and has some athleticism for that size.

This is the one area of need that isn't quite as deep in next year's draft so far. Players will likely emerge though, look at Fairley this year at Auburn. Right now though there are a few potential 1st rounders that would be a good fit in the Bengals 4-3 defense at DT. Worthy is the big name as a potential top 5-10 pick in next year's draft. There's also Crick and Forston who are projected 1st rounders at this point for next year's draft. Really though after that there's only one other player in my top 50 and that is Powell from North Carolina and he's really more suited for DE in a 3-4 defense, though he could play DT in a 4-3 if he bulked up a bit. As of now there doesn't look to be a whole lot of prospects for the 2nd round, and if this remains the case and the Bengals continue to struggle against the run they may be forced to use their 1st round pick on a DT or go after someone in free agency. DT's in free agency cost a lot of money! The good ones do at least. Look at Haynesworth. If players don't emerge the best strategy would then be to go DT in the 1st and then OT and RB in the 2nd and 3rd depending on who's available when they pick.

So that basically sums up what the Bengals could potentially be looking at as far as next year's draft goes. For the most part the positions they look to need the most are going to be loaded except for DT. I'm not really that concerned about that either as defensive line seems to be the position where the most players emerge every season. Look at this year, I think 12 defensive lineman ended up going in the 1st round and when I looked ahead to the 2011 draft last year there weren't nearly that many top prospects at the position. So things should set up for the Bengals to have another excellent draft in 2012 and that would be their fourth in a row. In 2009 that was the Maualuga/Johnson steals in the 2nd and 3rd, plus Bernard Scott in the sixth. In 2010, Gresham, Shipley, and Geno Atkins. Then this year Green/Dalton QB/WR combo plus a steal with Boling in the 4th. Having this many consecutive good drafts is what builds Super Bowl Champions and the Bengals may be another good draft or two away from doing just that.

2012 NFL Draft Big Board


  1. Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

  2. Alshon Jeffrey, WR, South Carolina

  3. Matt Kalil, OT, USC

  4. Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

  5. Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina

  6. Jonathon Martin, OT, Stanford

  7. Matt Barkley, QB, USC

  8. Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State

  9. Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

  10. Stephen Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

  11. Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

  12. Alfonzo Denard, CB, Nebraska

  13. Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa

  14. Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State

  15. Brandon Jenkins, OLB, Florida State

  16. Knile Davis, RB, Arkansas

  17. Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma

  18. Vontaze Burflict, LB, Arizona State

  19. Cliff Harris, CB, Oregon

  20. Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama

  21. Monti Te'o, LB, Notre Dame

  22. Kenny Tate, SS, Maryland

  23. Jeff Fuller, WR, Texas A&M

  24. Jared Crick, DT, Nebraska

  25. Janoris Jenkins, CB, Florida

  26. Donte Paige-Moss, DE/OLB, North Carolina

  27. Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma

  28. Micheal Brewster, OC, Ohio State

  29. Zach Brown, LB, North Carolina

  30. Devin Taylor, DE/OLB, South Carolina

  31. Micheal Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

  32. Marcus Forston, DT, Miami

  33. Nate Potter, OT, Boise State

  34. LaMicheal James, RB, Oregon

  35. Andre Branch, DE, Clemson

  36. Omar Bolden, CB, Arizona State

  37. Tydreke Powell, DT/DE, North Carolina

  38. Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia

  39. Travis Lewis, LB, Oklahoma

  40. Nick Foles, QB, Arizona

  41. Matt Reynolds, OT, BYU

  42. Ray Ray Armstrong, SS, Miami

  43. Mohamed Samu, WR, Rutgers

  44. Micheal Egnew, TE, Missouri

  45. DeVier Posey, WR, Ohio State

  46. Levy Adcock, OT, Oklahoma State

  47. Cyrus Gray, RB, Texas A&M

  48. Greg Childs, WR, Arkansas

  49. Mark Barron, SS, Alabama

  50. Chris Owusu, WR, Stanford

Monday, May 2, 2011

2012 Mock Draft (Way Too Early Edition)


Yeah it's way too early for this. Oh Well! Draft order based on my post draft power rankings.


1. Washington Redskins- Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

The Redskins win the Andrew Luck sweepstakes. Why? They didn't take a QB this year and really didn't do much to improve themselves in my opinion.

2010 1st Round Pick: Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue

2. Carolina Panthers: Alshon Jeffrey, WR, South Carolina

The Panthers will need to get Cam Newton some weapons on the outside if they want to give him any chance to succeed at all. Jeffrey will be an underclassmen but should come out as talented as he is.

2010 1st Round Pick: Cam Newton, QB, Auburn

3. Denver Broncos- Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

I think Champ Bailey is going to be moving to Safety. Kirkpatrick is 6-3 and agile. He could be the top player on the board in next year's draft a la Patrick Peterson.

2010 1st Round Pick: Von Miller, DE/OLB, Texas A&M

4. Arizona Cardinals- Matt Barkley, QB, USC

I think the Cardinals get McNabb or Bulger in free agency this year. That doesn't work out and Wisenhunt gets fired. A new coach comes in and wants his guy at QB.

2010 1st Round Pick: Patrick Peterson

5. Tennessee Titans- Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

The Titans have needed CB help across from Cortland Finnegan for years. Even Finnegan is shaky and the Titans have to play pass happy Indianapolis and Houston twice a year.

2010 1st Round Pick: Jake Locker, QB, Washington

6. Buffalo Bills- Matt Kalil, OT, USC

The Bills had a pretty good defensive draft this year. Next year they'll try to beef up that offensive line. The Bills are still in rebuilding mode and doing it the right way, building a team before taking a rookie QB to throw to the wolves with no help around him.

2010 1st Round Pick: Marcell Dareus, DT/DE, Alabama

7. Seattle Seahawks- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

The Seahawks had the worst draft in the league in my opinion. Their picks were reaches and they didn't take care of their needs. They need some playmakers on that offense.

2010 1st Round Pick: James Carpenter, OG, Alabama

8. Minnesota Vikings- Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina

The Vikings are very talented but their QB issues will have them picking this high. They will give Ponder a few years to prove himself though. They could use some pass rush help across from Jared Allen and Coples would be the best player on the board at this point.

2010 1st Round Pick: Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State

9. Cleveland Browns- Micheal Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

The Browns passed on Julio Jones, but acquired a lot of high draft picks. They still are lacking that big time playmaker on the outside though.

2010 1st Round Pick: Phil Taylor, DT, Baylor

10. Miami Dolphins- Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma

If Chad Henne doesn't show anything again this year, and I doubt he will he wasn't even good at Michigan, he will be done in Miami.

2010 1st Round Pick: Mike Pouncey, OC, Florida

11. San Francisco 49ers- Janoris Jenkins, CB, Florida

The Niners were probably hoping that Peterson would fall to them this year. He didn't but I think they made a good pick in Aldon Smith. That said they still need CB help.

2010 1st Round Pick: Aldon Smith, DE, Missouri

12. Jacksonville Jaguars- Jeff Fuller, WR, Texas A&M

The Jaguars went out and got their QB of the future, now they have to get some playmakers so he can succeed.

2010 1st Round Pick: Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri

13. Oakland Raiders- Alfonzo Denard, CB, Nebraska

The Raiders are going to need some CB help after losing Nmandi Asomoagh. This is a good draft for that as CB is loaded.

2010 1st Round Pick: None

14. Cincinnati Bengals- Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

Richardson has a rare blend of speed and power and is one of the more talented backs to come into the NFL since Adrian Peterson. Benson will be getting up there in age and who knows if he'll even be back this year. If the Bengals are picking around this area this is the right pick. As there will be a lot of offensive and defensive lineman available in the 2nd and 3rd rounds that are talented as those position groups are deeper than RB in this draft class.

2010 1st Round Pick: AJ Green, WR, Georgia

15. New York Giants- Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State

The Giants needed offensive line help as they're getting a little long in the tooth on the line. Prince Amukamara was sitting there for them though and they made the right pick. That said they still need a big time OT.

1st Round Pick: Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska

16. St. Louis Rams- Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama

The Rams could use help at SAM LB. Upshaw could play either DE or LB positions and that versatility will make him a top 20 pick. They still need that number one WR so if they're picking this low they may need to move up to get one of the big 4 WR's.

2010 1st Round Pick: Robert Quinn, DE/OLB, North Carolina

17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia

The Bucs now have the most talented young defensive line in the NFL with them using thier first two picks the last two years on the D line. They got an absolute steal in talent with Bowers and if his knee checks out they are going to be impossible to stop up front. With Talib getting in trouble they need another CB and with that D line a couple good CB's will make them hard to throw on.

2010 1st Round Pick: Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa

18. Dallas Cowboys- Donte Paige-Moss, DE/OLB, North Carolina

The Cowboys ignored their pass rush in this year's draft. They still have Demarcus Ware but need to get him some help.

2010 1st Round Pick: Tyron Smith, OT, USC

19. Chicago Bears- Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa

Even though the Bears got a good player with Carimi to help the line they need more help on that line. I thought Carimi was a steal a 29, he's the most NFL ready player in the draft.

2010 1st Round Pick: Gabe Carimi

20. San Diego Chargers- Devin Taylor, DE/OLB, South Carolina

The Chargers got an absolute steal with Luiget at number 17, but that still left them needing that elite pass rusher.

2010 1st Round Pick: Corey Luiget, DT, Illinois

21. Detroit Lions- Cliff Harris, CB, Oregon

The Lions had an excellent draft and are poised to make the playoffs if there's a season this year. That said they still play in a division with Aaron Rodgers and need upgrades at CB.

2010 1st Round Pick: Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn

22. Baltimore Ravens- Micheal Brewster, OC, Ohio State

The Ravens have been good at Center for years, but Matt Birk is 37 years old and will likely be retiring soon.

2010 1st Round Pick: Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado

23. Houston Texans- Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma

Broyles would be a perfect compliment to Andre Johnson and give the Texans a WR threat to take some pressure off Johnson. Houston had a great draft adressing that horrible defense.

2010 1st Round Pick: JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin

24. Cleveland Browns- LaMicheal James, RB, Oregon

James would be a perfect compliment to Payton Hillis with his speed and pass catching ability. The Browns have a lot of young talent coming in with all these early picks acquired from Atlanta.

2010 1st Round Pick: Phil Taylor, DT, Baylor

25. Philadelphia Eagles- Omar Bolden, CB, Arizona State

The Eagles didn't get their CB that they needed until the 3rd round and he's a project. They're going to need to take one earlier next year.

2010 1st Round Pick: Danny Watkins, OG, Baylor

26. Indianapolis Colts- Vontaze Burflickt, LB, Arizona State

The Colts did a good job getting two offensive lineman that can contribute immediately. Now they need to work on that front seven on defense and stopping the run.

2010 1st Round Pick: Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College

27. Kansas City Chiefs- Manti Te'o, ILB, Notre Dame

The Chiefs had another phenomenol draft other than they reached a bit in the 1st for Baldwin. They could use a leader in the middle of that defense, like Pioli had with Teddy Bruschi in NE.

2010 1st Round Pick: Jonathon Baldwin, WR, Pittsburgh

28. New York Jets- Andre Branch, DE/OLB, Clemson

The Jets could use a pass rusher to come off the edge and Branch would be one of the best players available at this point. They did do a good job adressing that aging D line in this year's draft.

2010 1st Round Pick: Muhammad Wilkerson, DE, Temple

29. Pittsburgh Steelers- Marcus Forston, DT, Miami

Casey Hampton is getting old and the Steelers need to find his replacement. I hate that the Steelers got Heyward this year, but the rest of their draft wasn't that good.

2010 1st Round Pick: Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio State

30. New England Patriots- Tydreke Powell, DE/DT, North Carolina

This is a pick where the Pats get the five technique they've been missing since Richard Seymour. I'm really suprised they passed on Cameron Jordan or Cameron Heyward this year.

2010 1st Round Pick: Nate Solder, OT, Colorado

31. New England Patriots- Brandon Jenkins, DE/OLB, Florida State

This will be the pick the Patriots finally address that pass rush. I don't understand why they didn't take one this year with that pass rush being mediocre.

2010 1st Round Pick: Nate Solder, OT, Colorado

32. Green Bay Packers- Knile Davis, RB, Arkansas

The Packers won the Super Bowl despite losing all those players to injury. Now they get all those players back. Plus got another playmaker in Randall Cobb in the 2nd round this year and upgraded on the O line again.

2010 1st Round Pick: Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State

If the Bengals go Trent Richardson in the first round they should go OT and DT in the next two rounds depending on who's available when they pick.

2012 NFL Power Rankings (Post Draft)


  1. Green Bay Packers

  2. New England Patriots

  3. New Orleans Saints

  4. Pittsburgh Steelers

  5. New York Jets

  6. Kansas City Chiefs

  7. Indianapolis Colts

  8. Philadelphia Eagles

  9. Atlanta Falcons

  10. Houston Texans

  11. Baltimore Ravens

  12. Detroit Lions

  13. San Diego Chargers

  14. Chicago Bears

  15. Dallas Cowboys

  16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  17. St. Louis Rams

  18. New York Giants

  19. Cincinnati Bengals

  20. Oakland Raiders

  21. Jacksonville Jaguars

  22. San Francisco 49ers

  23. Miami Dolphins

  24. Cleveland Browns

  25. Minnesota Vikings

  26. Seattle Seahawks

  27. Buffalo Bills

  28. Tennessee Titans

  29. Arizona Cardinals

  30. Denver Broncos

  31. Carolina Panthers

  32. Washington Redskins

Looking to the Future for the Cincinnati Bengals


Now that the 2011 NFL Draft is officially in the books it's time to look into the future for the Bengals. This year's draft was clearly a changing of the guard and it's time to usher in a new era here in Cincinnati. We now have a new franchise QB and a new stud WR in Andy Dalton and AJ Green. It's looking like Carson Palmer and Chad Ochocinco will no longer be here. Hopefully this new era is a winning era and not a circus act like the last ten years with Chad.

I for one am excited about the future. Most draft experts had the Bengals as one of the best, if not the best, drafts in the NFL. They did this without trading up and giving away future picks as well. They could have loaded up on picks if they had traded with Atlanta, but if AJ Green turns out to be a stud would it have been worth it to trade all the way down to 27. They basically would've traded Green for a bunch of role players. Green is going to be a difference maker so would it be worth it to trade him for players like Daniel Thomas, the RB from Kansas State. That's the type of players they would have gotten this year. True that they would've gotten Atlanta's first round pick next year, but that's likely going to be a pick near the end of the round. Green is being compared to Calvin Johnson and if he turns out anything close to Johnson the Bengals made the right move.

The Bengals now have the best young core of WR's/TE's in the NFL in my opinion. Simpson really came on strong and looked like he could be an elite number two WR in the NFL. Shipley led all rookies in 3rd down catches last season and looks like the 2nd coming of Wes Welker. Gresham contributed big time last year and looks like he'll be one of the best TE's in the NFL very soon. With Gresham and Green's size the Bengals have two very good Red Zone targets. This group could give the Bengals an explosive offense for years to come.

The one thing is they need to build up the offensive line. I love the Clint Boling pick, I thought they should take him in the 3rd round and when he was still sitting there and was the pick in the 4th I was very excited. There are peices in place on this line with Boling, Whitworth, and Cook. They are good from the Center to the left of that line. Bobbie Williams is decent, but he's getting long in the tooth and is on the decline. Andre Smith is looking like a bust and that's a shame with all of that talent. The warning signs were there, but Mike Brown ignored them and now he's paying the price. If he doesn't perform this year I think it's time to cut your losses and possibly look to get a RT in the draft very early next year or find a good free agent. If they can find Bobbie Williams replacement and either draft or sign someone if Smith doesn't work out the line should be in good shape.

If the offensive line is built and does a good job that should make things a lot easier on the new franchise QB Andy Dalton. I really like this kid in Jay Gruden's West Coast Offense. I think if the line does a good job for him that he will be a star and this offense will be explosive.

On defense the Bengals struggled last year against the run. Hopefully they can get the O line taken care of and spend a 1st round pick on a DT next year. This defense is a premier DT away from being very good up front. With the emergence of Carlos Dunlap and Micheal Johnson the pass rush should be decent, especially if Antwan Odom can return and stay healthy. An elite DT next to Peko should give the Bengals a very good front four.

In the secondary they need to get Jonathon Joseph and Leon Hall extended for another 4 or 5 years. If they do they'll have one of the best CB tandems in the NFL still. They still need Safety help, they did draft Sands out of West Virginia, but he's a project that will likely take a year or two to develop.

The pass rush should also get some help from Dontey Moch, the 3rd round pick out of Nevada. He has rediculous speed for a LB. If he can be developed and Rey moves inside the LB corps should be set for years to come. The defense has the peices in place to be a top 5 defense right now and over the next year or two could be developed into the top defense in the NFL.

After this year's draft the future is bright. I really believe Andy Dalton is the QB that can lead this team to a championship. He won't have to do it on his own. If the O line is built over the next couple years and the defense gets to where it should be this will be a complete team. They aren't going to be serious contenders this season, but within 2 or 3 years this team should be a legit Super Bowl contender. The reason is that this team has drafted well the past few years.