Teams are putting the finishing touches on their preparation as the 2015 NFL Draft is nearly here.
To preview the draft for the Cincinnati Bengals, I got together with Matthew Willson of Stripe Hype. Below are my questions followed by his answers.
1. What are the team’s biggest needs heading into the draft and how might they address them?
"They took care of their most immediate needs in free agency, but looking at depth and near future, safety should be a high priority, as Reggie Nelson and George Iloka are both free agents in 2016. A player like Landon Collins should be at the top of their draft board. An offensive tackle would not surprise me either with Andrew Whitworth and Andre Smith hitting free agency after this upcoming season."
2. What needs to happen for this draft to be considered a success?
"They need to get key depth positions like safety, and offensive tackle, as well as getting younger at cornerback. If they can cover those three positions with solid teachable talent, then this draft will sum up one of their best off seasons in recent memories."
3. What in your mind would make this draft a failure?
"Consistently picking up the best guy on the board just because he was there instead of attacking depth and future needs. Picking up a running back because Mike Maylock says he was the best next guy up would be a wasted pick and that is what they need to avoid."
4. What is a bold prediction for your team this draft?
"They will make a first round draft pick trade. Moving back in the first round makes sense because if the player they want is no longer on the board, then they might run into a wasted pick situation. I could see them moving back in the first or even moving to the second round for multiple picks."
5. What is a draft angle the general public might not be aware of for your team?
"Going after a wide receiver in the early rounds may make a lot of sense. We know the team has been talking with A.J. Green and his camp for an extension, but if they know talks are not progressing how they would like, finding a young wide receiver, if for nothing else could fill in a huge depth role, is a real possibility. Let’s also not forget that Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu are free agents in 2016 as well."
For full Bengals coverage, check out Stripe Hype.