Bengals miss Penei Sewell in Todd McShay’s first 2021 NFL mock draft

Chris Roling
·1 min read

It’s mock draft season with the regular season over, so it was only a matter of time before an expert like ESPN’s Todd McShay weighed in on what the Cincinnati Bengals will do with the fifth overall pick.

McShay’s mock has the Bengals taking Northwestern offensive tackle Rashawn Slater at No. 5:

Just four teams allowed more sacks than Cincinnati this season, not something you want to see right after drafting a franchise quarterback at No. 1 overall. Jonah Williams, a 2019 first-round tackle, is the only entrenched starter on the offensive line at the moment, and with Joe Burrow returning from a bad knee injury, protection will be even more important in 2021. A 2020 opt-out, Slater projects best as an interior lineman — possibly at center — but he also has experience at both left and right tackle. With Penei Sewell gone, Slater is the top offensive lineman on my board here and will help fix a woeful unit with growing importance to the future success of this Bengals team. But also watch for the Bengals to try to move up to get Sewell.

Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell comes off the board second overall in this scenario, so the Bengals choose to pass on someone like LSU wideout Ja’Marr Chase, who goes seventh.

While Sewell is option No. 1, Slater isn’t a bad fallback plan. But if Sewell isn’t there, rest assured the team might consider a trade down, too.

In another recent two-round mock, the Bengals attacked the offensive line in front of Joe Burrow by taking high-profile linemen with their picks in the first and second rounds.

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