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The defending AFC champion Cincinnati Bengals are up against it in 2022. Since the Buffalo Bills lost four Super Bowls in a row, only the 2017 New England Patriots returned to the Big Game the next year. Worse yet, the last 16 quarterbacks to lose their Super Bowl debut never returned. Joe Burrow and the Bengals will look to buck history in 2022, and that starts with making smart picks in the 2022 NFL Draft, like the one in this three-round Cincinnati Bengals mock draft.

Cincinnati Bengals Mock Draft 1.0

(L-R) Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum, the Cincinnati Bengals, and Ohio State tight end Jeremy Ruckert. Linderbaum and Ruckert are picks in this Cincinnati Bengals mock draft.
(L-R) Tyler Linderbaum, Cincinnati Bengals logo, Jeremy Ruckert | Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images; Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images; Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

In’s last Cincinnati Bengals mock draft, the team addressed its biggest issues by taking a cornerback, offensive lineman, and tight end. That mock draft looked like this: 

  • Round 1, No. 31 overall: Roger McCreary, CB, Auburn
  • Round 2, No. 63 overall: Nicholas Petit-Frere, OT, Ohio State
  • Round 3, No. 95. overall: Greg Dulcich, TE, UCLA

With the draft now less than a week away, the draft board has changed, but the organization’s needs have stayed the same. That’s why this Cincinnati Bengals mock draft 2.0 gets at the same issues, just in a slightly different way. 

Round 1, No. 31 overall: Tyler Linderbaum, C, Iowa

The Bengals revamped their offensive line this offseason, signing La’el Collins, Alex Cappa, and Ted Karras. Right now, Kappa is the starting center, but if the best center in the draft falls to No. 31 — as he does in this Cincinnati Bengals mock draft — the team will pounce. 

Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum is 6-foot-2, 296-pounds, and has 31 1/8-inch arms, making him slightly undersized for an NFL center. That will make some teams pass, which will be the Bengals’ gain. 

Linderbaum was a unanimous consensus first-team All-American, one of three finalists for the Outland Trophy (for best interior offensive or defensive lineman that went to Georgia’s Jordan Davis), and won the Rimington Trophy for the nation’s best center, per His tape also confirms he’s an incredible center who should flourish in the pros. 

Round 2, No. 63 overall: Jeremy Ruckert, TE, Ohio State

Most of the top-tier cornerbacks will be gone by the end of the second, so, in this Cincinnati Bengals mock draft, the team focuses on replacing C.J. Uzomah at tight end. This is the best place to do it, as there will likely be a run on TE in Round 3. At this point, the Bengals will have their pick of almost every player at the position outside of Trey McBride. 

Ohio State’s Jeremy Ruckert has moved up draft boards throughout the pre-draft process. His production as a Buckeye wasn’t much, thanks to a barrage of pass-catching weapons in the program, but he did average over 11 yards per reception the last two seasons and scored eight touchdowns.  

The 6-foot-5, 250-pound tight end hasn’t tested much due to a Senior Bowl foot injury, but he plays fast and strong on tape. He’s a good blocker, and while he’ll never be a Rob Gronkowski home run type, he could become an excellent possession TE ala, Dalton Schultz. 

Round 3, No. 95. overall: Coby Bryant, CB, Cincinnati


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Now, in Round 3 of this Cincinnati Bengals mock draft, the team finally gets its cornerback. Right now, Eli Apple is the team’s best big corner, and we all saw how that worked out in the Super Bowl. 

At 6-foot-1, 193-pounds, Cincinnati Bearcats CB Coby Bryant is a solid pick here. He doesn’t have ideal straight-line speed with a 4.54-second 40-yard dash at the combine, but he has wide receiver-like ball skills that helped him pick off nine balls in college.

Bryant may not have the high-end athleticism to develop into a true No.1 shutdown guy. However, he’s a smart, hardworking player who knows how to play the position. That could make him valuable to the Bengals right away as a CB2 or CB3. 

All stats courtesy of Sports Reference