In the coming weeks leading up to the April 28th NFL Draft, I will be taking a look at past Bengals drafts during the Marvin Lewis era. Today’s I look back at rounds 4-7 of the 2006 Bengals draft. The Bengals have finally turned the corner, or so it seemed at the time. The excitement of the first playoff berth in 14 seasons was tempered with the horrific injury to Carson Palmer in the first round of the playoffs, and our rival Steelers won the Super Bowl. There was optimism in the Queen City, but the gambles the team took with character began to bite them repeatedly. The rest, as they say, is history…
Round 4: Domata Peko, DT, Michigan St. Peko is easily visible on the field, due to his large frame and the mass of hair flowing out of his helmet. This guy has been a stud, and a steal in round 4. One of the best picks in the Marvin Lewis era.
Other options: Elvis Dumervil from the Ville was picked a couple of picks later, but I would rather have Peko.
Round 5: A. J. Nicholson, LB, Florida St. Major character flags, but the Bengals rolled the dice on the FSU star. He stay in trouble and got cut after one season.
Round 6: Reggie McNeal, QB/WR, Texas A&M. Another gamble, another one and done for the Bengals.
Round 7 from Houston: Ethan Kilmer, CB, Penn St. and Round 7: Bennie Brazell, WR, LSU. These guys were essentially the same type of player, track guys that can run and would try to learn how to be good at football. I remember that nobody had a bio on either player and everyone was scratching their heads trying to get information on them. Not a bad gamble in the 7th round, but no payoff as both were gone after a few seasons.
Other options: Marquis Colston and Miles Austin could’ve been picked at either spot.
Draft grade: A-. I love the first few rounds, and those are the ones that count the most. Peko, Whitworth, and Joseph are all solid starters and Rucker is a contributor.