Kaiir Elam is the move for Bengals in latest expert mock draft
Cornerback seems like one of the most likely options for the Cincinnati Bengals in the first round.
That’s why the position dominates the list of 15 players we love in the first round for the Bengals and even in our final seven-round mock draft, corner is the first thing the team does after the opening round.
USA Today’s Charlie Goldsmith sees similar things while making Flordia corner Kaiir Elam the pick at No. 31:
“The Bengals don’t have to draft a Day 1 starter, but they can draft a rookie who could challenge for a starting spot. Elam fits the Bengals’ long-term plan at cornerback and has the size, speed and physicality to compete with Eli Apple in training camp for a starting role immediately.”
That pick comes with the best center in the class, Iowa’s Tyler Linderbaum, still on the board. It also illustrates the sheer need to grab a prospect like Elam who can play situationally right away while possibly developing into a long-term No. 1 corner with time.
Size, fit and production all suggest Elam would be a dynamite pick:
% of targets resulting in a forced incompletion or INT since 2019:
Marcus Jones: 25%
Sauce Gardner: 24%
Kaiir Elam: 24%
Roger McCreary: 24%
Derek Stingley Jr: 22%
Tariq Woolen: 21%
Kyler Gordon: 19%
Andrew Booth Jr: 18%
Cam Taylor-Britt: 17%
Trent McDuffie: 13% pic.twitter.com/V8QvgmMGva
— Ben Linsey (@PFF_Linsey) April 21, 2022
Of course, there’s a corner in every round who makes sense for the Bengals, should they go a different direction in the first: