The Cincinnati Bengals used 10 picks and managed to land eight players to whom I had given 3rd-round grades or better. This was truly an unprecedented haul for a franchise that needed to make a splash in order to compete with the Steelers and Ravens.
Looking at the newly revamped Bengals roster, it’s impossible not to be impressed by the depth at nearly every position. Most of the rookies brought in won’t play significant roles early on, but just having quality depth behind their entrenched starters will make a difference over the course of a 16-game season. You never know when someone will go down with an injury, and the Bengals now have the depth to fill holes as they arise throughout the course of the season.
With the help of this draft class, the Bengals should be considered legitimate contenders in the AFC North in 2012.