2013 NFL Draft: Cincinnati Bengals Make Unusual Selection of Tanner Hawkinson in Round 5

By Simon Greene
NFL Draft
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Bengals are making it very clear that they are going to be a top offense next season by choosing yet another offensive player in the 2013 NFL Draft.

This time, though, it seems like the Bengals slightly wavered from the excellent decision-making they’ve shown thus far in this draft by taking University of Kansas guard Tanner Hawkinson instead of drafting Ohio State offensive lineman Reid Fragel.

Hawkinson is still a decent choice for the Bengals as he has the quick feet and hands to lead runs. He can help out zone blocking and has the decent height to be able to keep pass rushers at bay.

Round five seems adequate for Hawkinson, but as he had a poor showing at the NFL Combine with a 5.07 40-yard dash and a 28 inch vertical leap, it seemed unlikely he would be gone before now. The combine was not indicative of his college career however, as he was one of Kansas’s top players and their offensive captain. After moving from tight end into the OG position, he made an immediate impact.

There are some questions at the moment as to why the Bengals have chosen an offensive lineman in round five. The main reason being that only yesterday, the Bengals signed a new three-year deal with right tackle Andre Smith for $18 million. Smith was one of the top tackles in the NFL last season and with an extremely strong offensive line and depth already in place, it didn’t seem overly necessary.

Secondly, the back up quarterback situation in Cincinnati at the moment is … questionable. They signed Josh Johnson and John Skelton this offseason, two quarterbacks who could do with a little competition — so picking one of the remaining quarterbacks would have been wiser.

Lastly, the Bengals could take this time to look at another receiver and at pick No. 156, receiver Ryan Swope, one of the fastest receivers in this years’ combine, was still available.

It’s becoming unclear what the Bengals plan to do with the remainder of the draft.

Follow Simon on Twitter @simongreene88

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