2013 NFL Draft day two is finally upon us and it seems to be running a lot smoother than day one. With only 25 minutes gone, the Cincinnati Bengals have made their first selection of round 2 with running back Giovani Bernard. The Bengals made it quite clear that they preferred Bernard over number one running back prospect Eddie Lacy when attending they North Carolina Tar Heels pro day in March, and then invited him to Cincinnati for dinner with members of the coaching staff at the beginning of April. There was no illusion — after all the attention that they gave him — that it would be anyone else.
Cincinnati has made a good choice of running back by choosing Bernard. He is excellent in open field and constantly pushes for the extra yard after a tackle, so he should be able to do the running back job in Cincinnati some justice next season. In just two seasons with the Tar Heels, Bernard put up almost 3,500 total yards and 31 touchdowns at an average of 6.1 yards per carry. Definitely ideal numbers when a running back is looking to transition to the NFL.
Although he’s not known for his pass catching in the same way running back Montee Ball is, Bernard has put up 752 receiving yards and six touchdowns, almost twice as many receiving yards as “The Law Firm” BenJarvus Green-Ellis has in his entire career. This will come in very handy for the Bengals next season, as quarterback Andy Dalton prefers the short pass, so being able to dump the ball off to Bernard who can then open up the field will be a huge help next season.
The only criticism with this choice is that there was a strong likelihood that the Bengals would still have been able to pick up Bernard with the 53rd overall pick, as he was not seemingly on the top of the radar for as many teams as Lacy.