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*** [RD 3] Bengals Select ~ MCKINNLEY JACKSON, NT ***

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He’s a load. Wasn’t surprised they picked him but surprised he went so early… thought day 3. But NT and DT was a pretty lean crop so they wanted to get in earlier.


DJ Reader was a later pick when he was drafted -5th round, I think, and he turned out quite well. it’s a wait and see for me but hope it works out. 

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McKinnley Jackson to Bengals in NFL draft: Instant grade, analysis, stats for 97th pick

1398199394000-jwilliams.jpg?width=48&heiJason Williams
Cincinnati Enquirer
The Cincinnati Bengals left no doubt late Friday night that they are fully committed to upgrading their defensive line, taking Texas A&M defensive tackle McKinnley Jackson in the third round with the 97th overall pick in the 2024 NFL draft. The Bengals used two of their top four picks on defensive tackles, also taking Michigan’s Kris Jenkins in the second round on Friday. Three of the Bengals’ draft picks so far are from the SEC, following a franchise strategy to draft players from high-profile, winning programs. Here's our instant draft grade of the pick and our rapid analysis of the pick.

Texas A&M DT McKinnley Jackson to Bengals NFL draft grade: Instant reaction

Grade: B+


Why: Hand it to the Bengals. They weren’t good against the run last season, and they stuck to a plan to address their problems on the interior of the defensive line this offseason.


The Bengals signed Sheldon Rankins in free agency and made Jenkins their second pick in the draft. They then went to work on addressing their depth issues on the defensive line by picking Jackson, who’s 6-foot-2 and 326 pounds. He is strictly a run-stopper, and the Bengals need a guy like him to help clog things up in the middle after they ranked 26th in the NFL against the run in 2023.


Jackson is quick and has a low center of gravity, but he’s by no means a refined player entering his professional career. With 10 picks in the draft, though, the Bengals using the late third-round pick on a talented player who needs time to develop was a solid move. This is where you make developmental picks – not in the first round.


https://www.cincinnati.com/story/sports/nfl/bengals/2024/04/27/grading-cincinnati-bengals-pick-texas-am-defensive-tackle-mckinnley-jackson-at-no-97-nfl-draft-2024/73448406007/?utm_source=cincinnati-bengals-news-strada&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=sportsbaseline&utm_term=Content List - Stacking - optimized&utm_content=pcin-cincinnati-nletter01

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  • BlackJesus changed the title to *** [RD 3] Bengals Select ~ MCKINNLEY JACKSON, NT ***

Think I saw where Kent Lee Platt - the guy doing all of the RAS stuff - said it just breaks down for true NT.  The formulas just break down for them since they are lumped in with all DTs.

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On 4/26/2024 at 8:17 PM, BlackJesus said:

It's in this video, which I watched after his highlights, but I'm going to have to agree that they nailed the thing that really jumped out to me on: his first step. He's off the ball before anyone on either line so often in his highlights, and it's not uncommon for the opponent to literally get shocked by it (the combination of quickness and the heaviness of the land?).  I was expecting a big lump of lead in the middle of the line but two of his spin moves for sacks against tackles had me double-taking. And then I read some of the just-posted evaluations and people talk about him having 3-Tech skills? Whelp, I'm confused, but if he can be that guy that they mention in this video, who occupies double teams and shocks/confuses the OL and thereby disrupts their scheme, hard to ask for much more than that. 


Now McKinnley, with Anthony the Safety, the two players I was the most ho-hum about on draft day are two of the ones who I'm more excited to see how they pan out. 


I will say one other thing, but I'll save it for the main thread :)

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He was a pretty big reach at pick 97. No objection to doubling down at NT with Reader leaving and Tupou unsigned. But we could have waited once Jenkins was onboard. Kristian Boyd or Evan Anderson later would have been fine as Tupou replacements so we could use 97 more productively. 

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