Just one day after taking William Jackson III at No. 24 overall in the 2016 NFL Draft, the Cincinnati Bengals came back with a solid day two, drafting Pittsburgh wide receiver Tyler Boyd with the No. 55 overall pick and Utah State linebacker Nick Vigil at No. 87 overall, addressing two big needs on both sides of the ball.
Boyd, who was a top five receiver for me coming into the draft, is a great fit in Cincinnati opposite AJ Green.
A silky-smooth receiver who excels with his route running and incredibly strong hands, Boyd is the exact possession receiver that the Bengals needed after losing Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu in free agency.
Boyd certainly isn’t a burner, but he’s a guy that will consistently catch the football and move the chains, which is precisely what Jones was for the Bengals.
After taking Boyd, Cincinnati could have gone a number of ways with their third-round pick. Surprisingly, the Bengals took Vigil, who is an intriguing linebacker that had plenty of production at Utah State, yet seems like a bit of a reach with the 87th overall pick.
Vigil recorded 144 tackles last season and is an explosive linebacker that flows sideline-to-sideline well, packing a punch. The only way I see this pick making sense for the Bengals is the fact that Vontaze Burfict will start the season on the suspension list, and the rest of the linebacking core is aging with Rey Maualuga and Karlos Dansby near the end of their careers.
With Vigil, he’ll likely see action right away on special teams, but he’s certainly a long-term project at linebacker who could be a starter down the line for the Bengals.
The Bengals hold the 122nd overall pick today. It will be interesting to see where they go, considering they don’t have many holes on the current roster.
My guess would be another wide receiver; someone like Georgia’s Malcolm Mitchell or South Carolina’s Pharoh Cooper.