1. Is Mike Brown too stubborn to draft a quarterback fourth overall and essentially let Carson Palmer win? And while we’re at it, is taking a quarterback like Blaine Gabbert or Cam Newton something you think the Bengals would be smart to do anyway? (I’d personally rather see my team take A.J. Green or a top pass rusher in that spot.)
Indications are that the Bengals are taking Carson Palmer’s threat to retire seriously enough to find a replacement in this year’s NFL Draft. They’ve been pretty enamored with Cam Newton, taking every opportunity to talk with him and there’s enough conjecture that the Bengals will draft Newton if he’s available. Green appears to be a favorite also. I wouldn’t count out Patrick Peterson, Nick Fairley or a pass rusher though.
2. In your opinion, what should their first-round draft board look like? Give me four names in order…
Patrick Peterson, A.J. Green, Marcell Dareus and Von Miller
3. Can you see them trading down?
Realistically, no. Ideally, yes. We’ve floated the idea that the Bengals have far too many gaps on this roster. They should be focused on acquiring picks. So we played with the idea of trading the fourth overall pick to a team picking in the top 12, acquire a couple of mid-round picks if possible and draft Julio Jones — a receiver that they’re very high on.
4. Is there an under-the-radar need that comes to mind? With Johnathan Joseph slated to become a free agent, maybe they should think about a corner?
Patrick Peterson makes the most sense for this team, specifically thinking of addressing needs. The Bengals aren’t notorious with keeping their best free agents in the middle of their prime when they would demand the most money. Joseph isn’t expected to return and Leon Hall, the team’s other starting cornerback, will be a free agent this time next year. With the need to address the position, it wouldn’t be surprising if the team selected Peterson or even Prince Amukamara.