Every year the needs are different and it’s a different crop of available players, but with Marvin Lewis entering his 13th season as head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals, there are philosophies and trends that may could provide some insight into what the team will do tonight.
The Bengals have made 13 first-round picks since Lewis arrived (they had two in 2012), and two of the positions some mock drafts have the team addressing tonight are two positions they have never gone after with their first pick — safety and defensive tackle.
In fact, the Bengals have only selected one defensive tackle in the second round under Lewis (Devon Still in 2012) and two in the third round (Brandon Thompson, 2012; Pat Sims, 2008).
Defensive tackle is one of the positions the team is expected to address early, but it’s hard to see the Bengals going after one in the first round.
The team also is in the market for a safety, but Alabama’s Landon Collins is the only projected as a first-round talent. And while he’s expected to be there at 21 when the Bengals go on the clock, it’s doubtful the team will go that direction.
Here’s a look at which positions the Bengals have targeted in the first round during Lewis’ tenure: Cornerbacks, 4 (Darqueze Dennard, Dre Kirkpatrick, Leon Hall, Jonathan Joseph); Tight end 2 (Tyler Eifert, Jermaine Gresham), guard 1 (Kevin Zeitler), wide receiver 1 (A.J. Green), tackle 1 (Andre Smith), linebacker 1 (Keith Rivers), defensive end 1 (David Pollock), running back 1 (Chris Perry) and quarterback 1 (Carson Palmer).