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Bengals Gab 2018 NFL Draft Scouting Report: N.C. State DE Bradley Chubb

N.C. State defensive end Bradley Chubb is an impact player who many teams will have their eyes on when the NFL Draft takes center stage this offseason.

Touted as the best defensive player in the draft by many, he’s a talent that could make a huge impact on a team right away depending on where he ends up.

Here’s a look at Chubb and what various places are saying about him.

NFL Draft Diamonds

SCOUTING REPORT: BRADLEY CHUBB, DE. NC STATE

HEIGHT: 6’4”

WEIGHT: 275

PROS: Plays with a very high motor and does not quit on plays. Chubb also plays for 4 quarters and wears down O-lines for 60 minutes. Great team leader and displays an energy that teammates feed off. Displays lots of burst off the edge and can beat offensive lineman with techniques, both inside and out. Uses his hands well to get around the edge and has enough speed to get to mobile quarterbacks. Has really good size and long arms that he uses efficiently to get into the backfield and disrupt plays. He plays the run well and is a dominant presence on the edge against opposing running backs. 190 career tackles, 53 tackles for loss, 25 sacks, and a handful of forced fumbles make Chubb a statistical dream for the draft, and his play on the field backs it up. He should be a first-round prospect come April.

CONS: Has been known to get beat in run blocking and sometimes gets handled at the LOS against the run. His speed and energy also mean that he over-pursues at times and runs past the play. Coaches have asked him to drop into coverage in the past and, while adequate in those situations, his pass coverage is overshadowed by his abilities as a pass rusher. He is also a bit heavy at 275 and will likely need to shed a few pounds once he enters the league.


USA Today Draft Wire

One of the nation’s most dominant and disruptive defenders, Chubb has been a one-man wrecking crew for the Wolfpack, racking up 48 tackles for loss and 20.5 sacks over the past two seasons. Despite opposing offenses scheming to avoid him, Chubb has continued to put up huge numbers and make a seismic impact.

A tailor-made 4-3 defensive end, Chubb is one of the most complete prospects in this year’s draft class. Though there may be more athletic pass-rushers available this year, Chubb’s combination of power, technique and a physical playing style make him this year’s best edge defender.

A Story on NFL.com about Chubb

The scoop: “If you compare him to Derek Barnett, he has similar production but he is a much more explosive athlete. I think he is way ahead of (Boston College’s Harold) Landry as a pro prospect. — AFC scout on N.C. State DE Bradley Chubb

The skinny: I’m not sure why a comparison to the Philadelphia Eagles rookie defensive end was made for Bradley Chubb, but let’s dig in. Chubb (6-foot-4, 275 pounds, per school measurements) is bigger than Barnett (6-3, 259) and I would agree that Chubb is the better athlete. Barnett has better hands. Chubb is faster than Barnett and might be the best pass rusher in the 2018 class. I’m undecided on where I project him, but he will be drafted earlier than where Barnett, the 14th overall pick in 2017, went.

What Walter Football Says on Chubb

“Chubb is a quality defender against the run. He can hold his ground, at times, and has the ability to shed blocks to get in on tackles outside of his gap. However, he could use more strength in his base and needs to get better at shedding blocks that are coming downhill straight at him. That would help him against NFL offensive linemen. Chubb is good at getting upfield to knife through his gap and cause havoc in the backfield. For the passing-driven pro game, Chubb looks like a solid base end who would fit really well in a 4-3 defense. That is what he has played at N.C. State, and he has shown some versatility to move inside and rush as a tackle in obvious passing situations. He could continue that in the NFL. Right now, Chubb looks like a tweener for a 3-4 defense between a five-technique and outside linebacker. At this time of year, one never knows if listed measurements are accurate, and players can change their weight during the process, so that could be subject to change.”

Bengals Want to Ink DT Geno Atkins DE Carlos Dunlap to Contract Extensions

The top offseason priority for the Bengals will be re-signing defensive tackle Geno Atkins and defensive end Carlos Dunlap to contract extensions according to Jim Owczarski of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

While the team needs to upgrade their offensive line drastically and has other needs if they hope to return to the playoffs in 2018, they have to keep their effective defensive nucleus intact. 2018 will be the final year of a five-year, $53 million extension Atkins signed in 2013. The All-Pro has easily lived up to that deal, and he remained one of the best defenders in the league in 2017. His age — he turns 30 in March — could depress his value somewhat, but Atkins should be looking for at least $14 million a year on his next deal.

Dunlap is in the same situation. They also hope to extend DT Geno Atkins this offseason. With at least 7.5 sacks each of the last five seasons, Dunlap has been something of a value on the five-year, $39 million extension he signed in 2013, so he will likely be looking for a raise. The former second-round pick out of Florida will turn 29 at the end of February.

Bengals Gab 2018 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Penn State RB Saquon Barkley

Saquon Barkley is a dynamic player who some have going as early as #1 to the Browns in the upcoming 2018 NFL Draft. Today we give you a look at what this big-time player has to offer wherever he ends up in the draft.

NFL.com Scouting Report by Daniel Jeremiah

What I liked: I’ll do my best to condense my thoughts here. I pretty much like everything about Barkley’s game. He has patience, vision and power as an inside runner. He can step through tackles or drop his shoulder and run through them. He is very quick laterally to avoid defenders in the hole. He has an excellent burst to the perimeter on outside runs. Once he gets the corner, he’s elusive in space and has the speed to go the distance.

He’s very dependable in pass protection. He’s assignment aware and does a nice job squaring up blitzing linebackers to stall their charge. He also has very strong, reliable hands. He can pluck the ball away from his frame and he’s explosive after the catch. He gets rave reviews from teammates and coaches for his tireless work ethic. His weight-room accomplishments have been well noted this offseason.

Where he needs to improve: There aren’t many areas where Barkley needs to improve. There have been a few occasions where he gets “bounce happy” instead of staying inside and taking a 2-3 yard gain. He has some negative plays as a result of his eagerness to hit the homerun. I’d love to see him used in a more diverse way in the passing game. He has the ability to split out and run routes like a receiver, but his opportunities were limited last year. Hopefully that will change this fall.

Biggest takeaway: Barkley is everything you’d want in a modern-day running back. He can run with power, generate explosive runs and contribute on passing downs. As a player, he reminds me a lot of Ezekiel Elliott coming out of Ohio State. I thought Elliott was one of the best pass-protecting college running backs I’d ever evaluated and Barkley is right on that level. Both guys have that ideal blend of size/speed and they are very instinctive football players.

Walter Football’s Take on Barkely going #1 to the Browns

Another Scouting Report on Barkley:

Strengths

Everything? Yeah, just about everything. Before we even get to his game, it’s worth noting that everyone who knows Barkley describes him as high character guy, including current Mississippi State head coach Joe Moorhead, describing him as “Smart, humble. He’s the rare guy whose humble attitude supersedes his talent.” On the field he is a powerful and explosive runner between the tackles, showing great vision on cut backs and the ability to run through someone if needed. He also has the ability to get outside on sweep plays and is extremely elusive in space. He has good hands and really improved his receiving game in 2017, contributing 54 catches. Add in that he is a great pass protector, something that can keep rookies off the field, and you are looking at one of the most complete running backs to ever enter the draft. Bonus: want to see someone power clean almost twice their body weight?
Weaknesses

There are basically no holes in Barkley’s game. He can get a bit indecisive in the hole at times and try to make too much happen, but those tendencies are due to him being better than everyone on the field. With his graduation to the NFL, I expect those bad habits to go away. He has a little room to improve on his pass catching as he dropped a couple easy balls over the year, but these critiques are splitting hairs.
Grade: A+

Saquon Barkley is a generational type running back. He’s an athletic specimen with a well-rounded game that will make an instant impact for an NFL team. How well he does immediately in the pros will be much more a function of where he lands than his skill set, he can do it all.

Albert Breer for SI saying that ‘Barkley is the Future of the NFL’

The Titans, built sturdy and tough up front, rushed for 195 yards on the vaunted Seahawks defense on Sunday. The Ravens spent the last two offseason getting younger and quicker on defense, and that group kept the Bengals and Browns out of the end zone in Weeks 1 and 2. Then in London, a Jaguars offense reworked this offseason with size in mind ran for 166 yards on them.

This is how the NFL works. Teams spent the last decade building around quarterbacks and receivers, and defenses are now stocked with 220-pound linebackers and 250-pound pass rushers. And now we’re getting the zig to that zag—personnel czars like Jacksonville’s Tom Coughlin and Tennessee’s Jon Robinson capitalized by building jackhammer offenses to run at those defenses, while creating better environments for their young QBs.

“That’s been going on since the 1970s,” said one NFC personnel exec. “It’s not a new trend, it’s the same cycle. New people rise in the football world, history repeats itself.”

Former Bengals Receiver Terrell Owens Elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame

After waiting it out after previously being snubbed by the voters, former Bengals wide out Terrell Owens finally earned football’s highest honor on Saturday, getting into the Hall of Fame on his third try.

Owens, who is top 10 all time in receptions (1,078), receiving yards (15,934) and receiving touchdowns (153), was kept out of the Hall of Fame for his first two years of eligibility for reasons that go beyond the football field. It was almost explicitly as a result of Owens’s behavior outside the lines. Owens was a notoriously huge pain in the rear as a teammate and for the media to cover. Let’s be real here — Owens really liked to hog the spotlight, and he was very good at drawing attention to himself, whether it be for crying about “my quarterback” (Tony Romo) or doing sit-ups in his driveway (with the Eagles). Owens almost always had ugly departures from whatever team he was playing for.

During his one season in Cincy in 2010, Owens had 983 yards and nine touchdowns. Joining Owens in the class of 2018 are Randy Moss, Brian Dawkins, Brian Urlacher and Ray Lewis, plus senior selections Robert Brazile and Jerry Kramer, and contributor Bobby Beathard.

The ceremony for Owens and the class of 2018 will take place on Saturday, August 4th in Canton, Ohio.

Bengals to Upgrade Their Offensive Line This Offseason

The Bengals top priority this offseason is to remake their porous offensive line, which likely means that right tackle Jake Fisher is “far from a lock” to start in 2018 and the team may not pick up fifth-year option for left tackle Cedric Ogbuehi according to Paul Dehner and Jim Owczarski of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Fisher spent the second half of the 2017 season on the non-football injury list with an irregular heartbeat and there is no guarantee he will be able to participate in OTAs. Even before going down, however, the 24-year-old was losing snaps to Andre Smith. a second-round pick out of Oregon in 2015, the Bengals need Fisher to improve dramatically under new offensive line coach Frank Pollack.

As for Ogbuehi, who was the Bengals’ first-round pick the same year as they chose Fisher, he has been a big disappointment since taking over the starting left tackle position in 2016. The 25-year-old has allowed 16 sacks in the last two seasons and graded out near the bottom of the OT Pro Football Focus rankings. The Bengals need to be aggressive in upgrading from Ogbuehi if they want any chance to return to the playoffs in 2018.

Video: Enjoy Some Cincinnati Bengals 2016 Highlights

To get you through the winter blues – some 2016 Bengals highlights

Bengals Fans Donate Nearly $5000 to Jaguars QB Blake Bortles’ Charity After the Jags Beat the Steelers

Bengals fans had a fun Sunday watching the rival Steelers fall to the Jaguars 45-42 in the AFC Divisional Round, ending the hopes for the Steelers of reaching the Super Bowl.

Cincy fans were very grateful for the outing for Jags QB Blake Bortles, so much so that a number of themy donated to his foundation in a ‘thank you’ of sorts for the win over their bitter enemies.

Here’s the story:

The nearly $5,000 in contributions donated so far started to come in after the Jaguars beat the Bengals’ rival, the Steelers, 45-42.

“Fans are at the core of the football experience and it’s truly exciting and rewarding when they band together, regardless of the team they cheer for, to make a positive impact in the lives of others. I greatly appreciate the support displayed by Bengals fans and they should know their support will make a difference,” said Bortles.

Cincinnati sports radio host Mo Egger encouraged Bengals fans through his blog, Twitter page, and during his show Monday to, as he said, “pay it forward” and support the Bortles Foundation.

Established in 2016, the Blake Bortles Foundation supports first responders in Oviedo and Jacksonville, Florida, and partners with organizations in Jacksonville and Oviedo to help children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

Report: Jon Kitna Chats with Bengals About Spot on Coaching Staff


A source told Alex Marvez of the Sporting News that Jon Kitna has interviewed for a position on head coach Marvin Lewis’ staff.

Although the exact role wasn’t immediately known, Kitna may be under consideration for the team’s vacant quarterbacks coach job. Cincinnati created the opening early this season when Bill Lazor was promoted to offensive coordinator to replace the fired Ken Zampese.

Kitna, 45, was Lewis’ first starting quarterback when the latter was hired as Cincinnati’s head coach in 2003. That is the same year Cincinnati used the No. 1 overall draft pick to select Carson Palmer, who replaced Kitna with the first-team offense in 2004. Kitna spent two seasons as Palmer’s backup before leaving for a starting position with the Lions in 2006.

Kitna is one of the NFL’s most improbable success stories. He rose from undrafted college free agent (NAIA Central Washington University) in 1996 to a 124-game starter in the NFL (50-74 overall record). He retired after the 2011 season, although the Cowboys brought him back as an emergency backup for one game in 2013.