Monday, April 20, 2009

Why Protecting Carson is Key to Bengals Draft

Willie Anderson, Eric Steinbach, Rich Braham, Bobbie Williams, and Levi Jones. This was the O-Line that led the Cincinnati Bengals to there last playoff appearance. In 2005 the Bengals had one of the best O-Lines in the NFL and now…. well no words can explain how the tides have turned. The Bengals franchise player has been getting pressured more than ever and the only way you’ll have a healthy Carson Palmer for an entire season is to surround him with big, high-caliber bodies on the line.

The Bengals have picked the following offensive lineman in the first two rounds of there draft since 1996:

1996: Willie Anderson (10)
2002: Levi Jones (10)
2003: Eric Steinbach (33)
2006: Andrew Whitworth (55)

Three of these four guys have played in the Pro Bowl and the other will someday get there. Looking at all the busts the Bengals have had in the past this position seems to be the most solid and overall the safest. This is how the Bengals O-Line would look if they use there first two picks on the line:

LT: Levi Jones, Anthony Collins
LG: Andrew Whitworth
C: Alex Mack/Eric Wood/Max Unger
RG: Bobbie Williams
RT: Eugene Monroe/Andre Smith, Anthony Collins

Yes, this looks much better. The Bengals do have more holes to fill but the team needs to learn from past experiences and not draft a RB or WR in the first two rounds. Yes, the defense does need to get better and we could use another linebacker but fill this need with one of your 3rd round picks. Hopefully the Bengals are smart and learn in order to win football games you need to protect your franchise player and you need to open up holes for your running back.


Adam said...

The key to any good football team is the offensive line. Take a look at any team that has seen a great deal of success, it comes a lot from the O-Line. They can make a good QB great and and a great RB legendary.

Brandon said...

Could not agree more. I would love for them to go OT and then C. Not sure if I put Levi on the left side of that line anymore, but we'll see if he is completely healthy. If they do that, I feel pretty good about this season with the improved defense and a healthy Carson Palmer. Looking forward to Saturday.