NFL Mock Draft 2018: Full first round – Who’s the Detroit Lions top pick?
The Bengals need help up front. Andrew Whitworth, their best tackle, left last year and the blocking was poor all year. Andy Dalton, who hasn’t won one postseason game in his career, struggled after losing both linemen and receivers. Rookie running back, Joe Mixon, was a bright spot but couldn’t compensate for the porous line in front of him.
So, it may seem like a no-brainer to select either Orlando Brown or Mike McGlinchey, both tackles, at #12. Some also view Ohio State center, Billy Price, as a mid-first selection, too.
The problem is that there is one athlete that I have not mentioned to this point in the draft, safety Derwin James, of Florida State. James is a hybrid safety-linebacker type, similar to JaBrill Peppers, Michigan, from the 2017 draft.
The question is whether or not the best available athlete is enough of a lure to take away from the biggest need, blocking. I am going to say, “No, he isn’t.” The offense may reach a bit here, but for all of the right reasons. The Bengals have a veteran quarterback and first round running back to protect.
The 6-7, 345 pound son of an NFL great seems like a good gamble. Brown is not a can’t miss prospect, and has problems with speed rushers, but he has the bloodline and ideal size to warrant this pick.