Marvin Lewis says “certain rare ability” needed to play cornerback

AP

The Bengals have taken more cornerbacks in Round One (three) than any other position in Marvin Lewis’ 11 years as head coach.

Of those three first-round corners, Leon Hall (2007) and Dre Kirkpatrick (2012) remain on the roster, with Johnathan Joseph having moved on to Houston in 2011. In addition, the Bengals have two other first-rounders — Terence Newman (2003, Dallas) and Adam Jones (2005, Tennessee) on the depth chart at cornerback.

At the club’s press conference, Lewis went into some detail on why the club has added so much first-round talent at cornerback.

“Quarterback and cornerback are the toughest positions to play in the league, and if you’re not good enough there, everyone else suffers,” Lewis said, according to a transcript on the club’s website. “And there’s no way to mask it. It takes certain rare ability to play those two spots.

“To play cornerback on defense, to run with a guy that can be bigger than you, can be faster than you, knows where he’s going, and you’ve got to run with him, and you’ve got to defend him and you can’t touch him.”

Added Lewis: “That’s a tough position. I’ve been fortunate in the league to be around a bunch of good corners, and most of them came in the first round. I feel pretty good about that.”

The Bengals select 24th overall on Thursday night. And, as it turns out, they could use a little help at cornerback.