The Cincinnati Bengals have had a nice offseason so far.
Landing Orlando Brown Jr, who will play left tackle for the Bengals, was easily Cincinnati’s most impressive move.
Other moves, such as bringing back linebacker Germaine Pratt and signing tight end Irv Smith Jr, were also solid moves for a franchise with Super Bowl aspirations.
There’s still one area, however, that CBS Sports thinks the Bengals need to address this offseason.
CBS Sports recently listed each NFL team’s biggest remaining need. They think Cincinnati needs to add an offensive guard to the roster.
From CBS Sports: For the time being, La’El Collins is on the roster, and that makes the offensive tackle position slightly less of a need despite how he performed last season. Cincinnati invested significant resources into the offensive line last offseason but still have positions to fill before Joe Burrow can feel secure. Alex Cappa and Ted Karras played well last season, and the team hoped last year’s starting left tackle, Jonah Williams, would either fill the other offensive guard position or flip to the right side. However, he requested a trade instead, following the signing of Pro Bowl left tackle Orlando Brown Jr.
The Bengals could certainly stand to add some depth/competition at the guard position.
But instead of scouring the remaining free agent market for a guard, a better approach could be to try to find a hidden gem late in the 2023 NFL Draft.
One perfect option would be Tennessee Vols offensive guard Jerome Carvin.
For some reason, Carvin hasn’t generated much hype during the pre-draft process (he wasn’t invited to the combine), despite his solid resume at Tennessee.
Carvin, a Memphis native, started 43 career games at Tennessee. He started 21 games at left guard, 17 at right guard, and five at center. That kind of versatility could be extremely attractive to the Bengals.
The former Vol allowed just one sack while playing 860 snaps in 2022, despite facing programs like Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Kentucky, and LSU.
Carvin didn’t allow any sacks in 2021.
The former Vol is being projected as a sixth-round pick in most seven-round mock drafts.
Earlier this week, Tennessee offensive line coach Glen Elarbee, Carvin’s former position coach, spoke about how much the Vols will miss Carvin in 2023.
“That was a tough son of a gun now,” said Elarbee. “He played through some things, he was just unbelievable. I think the first place you miss him is just in the room. Just who he was as a person, his attitude every day, his leadership. Probably one of my favorite players of all time.”
“Then, you just didn’t realize how lucky you were you had a starting left guard that could take only a minimal number of snaps at center during a week and if something happened, take off the glove, go to center, and not miss a beat. That part is definitely missed.”
The Bengals could get one of the biggest steals in the draft by targeting Carvin. And he would fill their biggest remaining need. It seems like a no-brainer for Cincinnati.
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