Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
The Bengals' biggest need is out of the way, so that affects our mock draft. Instead of taking a cornerback in Round 2, the Bengals will now take a quarterback...
Round 2, Pick No. 55: Logan Thomas, QB, Virginia Tech
Thomas is an exceptional physical talent who was very, very inconsistent in college. He needs to be coached better and find a team that will take the time to develop him. The Cincinnati Bengals can be that team, and he should be available when they pick again.
Although he may not be as good as Dalton right now, the physical talent of Thomas should be intimidating for the Bengals' current starter during training camp.
Round 3, Pick No. 88: Antonio Richardson, OT, Tennessee
Ideally, the Bengals would like to add a player who can compete with Clint Boling for the starting left guard spot or a potential starting center during the first three rounds of the draft. However, in this draft that player doesn't fall to them.
Instead, they take the best value offensive lineman available, Antonio Richardson. Richardson is a tackle with incredible athleticism. He needs to develop better technique, but in terms of pure physical talent he has long-term starter potential.
Round 4, Pick No. 123: Devonta Freeman, RB, FSU
The Bengals have good depth at the running back position, but BenJarvus Green-Ellis shouldn't be around much longer. With Giovani Bernard entrenched as a starter, they will only be looking for complementary players at the position in this draft.
Freeman's value at this point of the draft is too tempting to pass on. He could immediately compete for playing time as a nickel back because of his pass protection, meaning the Bengals could be more diverse in how they use Bernard.
Round 5, Pick No. 164: Kevin Pierre-Louis, OLB, Boston College
Pierre-Louis will remind the Bengals of a shorter Emmanuel Lamur. Lamur was expected to be an important player for the defense in 2013, but injury stopped his season before it began. Defenses are moving toward having more linebackers who can cover, so adding Pierre-Louis not only to compete with Lamur for playing time but also perhaps to play with him in certain packages makes sense.
Round 6, Pick No. 199: Jeremy Gallon, WR, Michigan
Andrew Hawkins departed for the Cleveland Browns this year. The Bengals don't necessarily need to replace him with someone from the draft, but they can add a player who could offer that skill set and be a punt returner by taking Jeremy Gallon in the sixth round.
Round 6, Pick No. 212: Seantrel Henderson, OT, Miami
Seantrel Henderson has the physical talent of a first-round pick, the production of a third-round pick and the character concerns of an undrafted free agent. It's tough to determine where Henderson will go, but some teams will likely have him completely off their boards.
The biggest issue for Henderson is that he failed a drug test at the combine. A number of players have done this in recent seasons and still gone on to success in the NFL, including Vontaze Burfict of the Bengals.
Round 7, Pick No. 239: Ben Gardner, DE, Stanford
Round 7, Pick No. 252: Kerry Wynn, DE, Richmond
After failing to find a defensive end they were comfortable taking in earlier rounds, the Bengals spend two picks on athletes in the seventh.