Leading up to the draft, Who Dey Live will be profiling a number of players who could be targets for the Bengals based on their position or their expected draft spot.
Here are my own thoughts on Auburn’s Cam Newton.
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Size: 6’5″ – 250 pounds
What I like: Newton’s blend of size and speed is ridiculous. He carried his team to a national championship last season, making several clutch plays in critical games. He’s the reigning Heisman Trophy winner and could give the Bengals’ beleaguered fan base a serious jolt. Plus, he’d be a matchup nightmare for opposing defensive coordinators, forcing teams to “spy” him in every passing situation with a linebacker he could probably outrun anyway.
What I don’t like: All his intangibles. There are serious questions about Newton’s character, considering he was forced out of the University of Florida (a stolen laptop was involved) and there were rumors that cash was involved in his commitment to Auburn. He made comments about wanting to be an entertainer and an icon, in addition to an athlete. He hasn’t played much under center. He didn’t have very difficult reads in Auburn’s zone-read offensive scheme. And his dad is probably more involved in his career than he should be.
Final thoughts: I think Newton is too risky at No. 4. Athletically, I think he can be a successful pro quarterback, but I worry about all the other stuff. If he would somehow slip late into the first round or even the second (which is highly unlikely), I’d be okay if the Bengals moved to get him. Otherwise, I’d prefer to take a safe starter at No. 4 and grab a quarterback in the later rounds.