The Bengals had a chance to take tackle Penei Sewell with the fifth overall pick in the draft, but opted for wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase and then traded down in the second round before selecting some protection for 2020’s first overall pick.
Jackson Carman blocked for 2021’s first overall pick Trevor Lawrence as the left tackle at Clemson, but he’s set to play another spot in front of Joe Burrow. After signing Riley Reiff to go with Jonah Williams at tackles, the Bengals are kicking Carman inside to play guard.
“He’s an AFC North physical, powerful offensive lineman who is very athletic,” director of college scouting Mike Potts said. “The way this division is set up, this is a physical line of scrimmage division. He’s got a lot of things going for him. He’s a tackle with guard flexibility. He’s extremely intelligent. People say, ‘You’ve never seen him play guard.’ But with all the research we did on him, we know he’s smart enough to do it.”
Keeping Burrow upright is a necessity for the Bengals in 2021 and beyond. If Carman can help in that effort at any spot, his selection will be a clear win for Cincinnati.