The first major head scratcher of the draft for the Bengals.  They traded back from 42 to 52 and acquired an additional 4th round pick and 6th pick.  After making a slam dunk pick in the first round with offensive tackle Jonah Williams, the Bengals addressed another need with their second need.  While it isn’t their most pressing need, it still makes some sense.  I thought they could go tight end in the second round but I didn’t think they’d reach this badly for a player.

Initial Reactions

My first reaction here was a string of words that would not be appropriate to use here.  The selection of Drew Sample is a strange one.  Yes, Cincinnati needed tight end help with the oft-injured Tyler Eifert and relatively average C.J. Uzomah manning the position.  There were so many better options available for them at both 42 and 52.  Josh Oliver, Jace Sternberger, and Kahale Warring are all superior prospects that went in the third round.  Cincinnati must have valued Sample’s blocking ability much more than others because he is a fantastic blocker.  The value here and the ceiling of the player simply don’t justify the selection.

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The Fit?

Sample actually fits what Cincinnati wants to do on offense.  It seems with the selection of Wiliams in the first round and Sample after that, the Bengals want to pound the rock.  The team wants to be more physical and they selected the second best run-blocking tight end in the entire draft.  He may not see many snaps behind Eifert and Uzomah, but he brings good value as an in-line tight end.  Uzomah plays more of a flex role and Eifert can do either.  Sample will be TE3 unless Eifert gets injured again.  Look for Sample to take over most of the in-line duties if that were to happen.

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