The Bengals and draftable quarterbacks are going to be linked heavily this week, given Ryan Mallett’s visit on Friday and this week’s private workout of Cam Newton in Auburn.
With Bengals coaches and scouts not off the road until later in the week, it looks like there isn’t going to be a full-blown discussion or debate for at least a few more days. So the notions they are clearing the decks to draft Mallett at No. 35 or Newton or Blaine Glabbert at No. 4 seem to be a bit premature. A big part of the Mallett discussion is going to be about the so-called intangibles and that’s going to take a little longer to break down and get a consensus than making a call on a guy’s arm, which by all accounts is terrific.
The presumption seems to be since the Bengals have gambled on risks before (Odell Thurman, Chris Henry, Andre Smith) they’ll do it again. But those guys didn’t play quarterback, either.
The intriguing question is if the Bengals don’t draft a QB at No. 4. Would they be willing to trade up into the first round or to even trade with the Patriots to jump two slots into the second round’s top spot for Mallett?
History would tell you no. Not even for a quarterback.
They’ve only traded up twice, according to the media guide: In 1995 they traded the fifth pick and their second-round pick to Carolina for the right to draft Penn State running back Ki-Jana Carter No. 1. In the 2002 third round, they again hit up the Panthers for their third-round pick (No. 67) for the Bengals’ third-round pick (73) and a fifth-rounder.
Knowing the Lions were also looking for a tight end at No. 68 and that TCU’s Matt Schobel was the last one on the board that could come in and be a factor, the Bengals were desperate to get in front of Detroit because they had virtually no other tight end on the roster.
Now, could they be that desperate at No. 35 for a QB?
It would be historic.
Tags: Blaine Gabbert, Cam Newton, Ki-Jana Carter, Matt Schobel, Ryan Mallett
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The estimable Peter King of Sports Illustrated posted two Bengals notes of note Monday.
He said he talked to one Bengals official over the weekend and was surprised to hear that whenever trades are allowed after the signing of a new collective bargaining agreement, the team will listen to trade offers for Carson Palmer.
Maybe. All I know is that when the Bengals left for the NFL scouting combine last week, the word was that Palmer was going nowhere. So, maybe they’ll listen to offers. Maybe they’ll take the calls. But the clear sense was that they were adamant Palmer would not be traded. No question they are looking for his replacememt in the draft and maybe they can be moved by the right price. But, at the moment, they aren’t looking to trade him.
King has the Bengals taking Auburn quarterback Cam Newton at No. 4, reasoning that Bengals president Mike Brown loves to draft quarterbacks and take gambles. Yeah, but that was before Akili Smith at No. 3 in 1999. After his performance at the combine on and off the field, Newton has to change some minds not only in the Bengals’ room, but elsewhere. Anything can happen in two months, kids.
But with head coach Marvin Lewis wary of one-year wonders and new offensive coordinator Jay Gruden talking about accuracy and leadership, that doesn’t translate into the Bengals taking Newton right now. After his March 8 pro day, another campus visit or two, and Newton’s April visit to Paul Brown Stadium, maybe he can change some minds.
But it sure sounds like what the Bengals are looking for in Gruden’s system if Palmer retires is competence over flash. They want a guy that has a good enough arm to stretch the field, but above all is accurate and smart and is going to be protected by the running game. They don’t need a Heisman Trophy winner, but a quarterback. No. 4 looks too high for it right now.
Tags: Cam Newton, Carson Palmer, Possible trade offers for Palmer; Bengals eye Newton?
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