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Cincinnati Bengals 2023 mock drafts: Who ESPN, CBS, PFF,, more have them selecting

The 2023 mock drafts are pouring in for the Cincinnati Bengals. Who are the consensus selections?

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As the kickoff of the 2023 NFL Draft draws closer, the number of mock drafts has proliferated. Experts from across the field have begun to reveal their final (or near-final) projections for how one of the league’s marquee offseason events will unfold. The accuracy of those predictions remains unclear, however.

Several notable draftniks have posted their official mock drafts, including their expectations for the Cincinnati Bengals. Here, we break down what each expert says about the first- and second-round selections.

First-round consensus

Kiper/McShay dueling mock: Julius Brents, CB, Kansas State
Peter King: Luke Musgrave, TE, Oregon State
Matt Miller: DJ Turner, CB, Michigan
Ryan Wilson: Michael Mayer, TE, Notre Dame
PFF: Anton Harrison, OT, Oklahoma
Adam Caplan: Luke Musgrave, TE, Oregon State
Chad Reuter: Michael Mayer, TE, Notre Dame

Because the Bengals made strides to improve their offensive line — primarily adding Orlando Brown Jr. from the Kansas City Chiefs — they have more flexibility with their top pick. That could manifest as a tight end. While not normally a premium position worthy of a first-rounder, this year’s class compares favorably to those from recent years. Michael Mayer probably ranks as the top prospect at the position on most draft boards and would seem out of place here. Luke Musgrave doesn’t have the same caliber of pedigree but does offer a higher athletic ceiling. Joe Burrow likely wouldn’t mind either one.

Oklahoma’s Anton Harrison might seem an odd projection at first. However, given Jonah Williams’ position switch and subsequent trade demand, adding some depth that could grow into a future starter holds some appeal.

Second-round consensus

Kiper/McShay dueling mock: Matthew Bergeron, OT/G, Syracuse
Matt Miller: Luke Musgrave, TE, Oregon State
Ryan Wilson: Cam Smith, CB, South Carolina
Chad Reuter: Zach Charbonnet, RB, UCLA

If the Bengals don’t land a tight end with their top pick but have the chance to take Musgrave in the second round, few will complain. Syracuse’s Matthew Bergeron, a college offensive tackle that could kick inside to guard, also makes sense given the current situation with Cincy’s O-line.

Should the Bengals move on from Joe Mixon (and even if they don’t), landing a running back in this draft feels paramount. That doesn’t mean they have to spend a second-rounder to do so, but that didn’t stop the front office from taking Mixon that early all those years ago. Cincinnati would better serve its interests by waiting.