Jonah Williams’ injury just the latest Bengals bad luck

Darin Gantt
ProFootball Talk on NBC Sports

Congratulations, you’ve been drafted in the first round by the Bengals.

The athletic trainer’s room is over there.

When the Bengals announced yesterday that first-round pick Jonah Williams was likely out for the year with a shoulder injury, it likely had a familiar ring.

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As noted by Field Yates of ESPN, Cincinnati’s last five first-rounders have been limited as rookies or missed most of the season because of injuries.

Williams was expected to start at left tackle, making the 2019 first-rounder a significant loss as he recovers from surgery on a torn labrum.

In 2018, their first pick was Ohio State center Billy Price, and he might have been the fortunate one since he only missed six games with a foot injury (after suffering a pectoral injury lifting weights at the Scouting Combine).

Their 2017 first-rounder John Ross played just 17 snaps as a rookie, as he dealt with knee problems and being in coach Marvin Lewis’ doghouse.

Cornerback William Jackson, their 2016 first-rounder, missed his entire rookie season with a torn pectoral, while 2015 first-rounder Cedric Ogbuehi missed 11 games because of knee issues. Darqueze Dennard, their 2014 first-rounder, largely avoided the curse, but it hit 2013 first-rounder Tyler Eifert with both barrels, as he was healthy as a rookie but barely ever since, playing in 28 of his last 80 games with a collection of injuries.

It’s not as if they’re going out and looking for hurt guys, as Price started 55 straight games at Ohio State and Williams started all 44 games he played at Alabama.

But regardless the reason, the next guy better be careful next year, and pause to pray for health before he gets the hug from Roger Goodell.

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