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It is that time of the year again--the time to hand out grades for the NFL Draft. Football Outsiders has compiled a list of grades from nine NFL writers and draft analysts to see how the grades would average out. Guess who has the top Grade Point Average (GPA) out of all 32 teams? You are correct if you guessed the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Bengals highest grade was of course an A+ from CBS SPORTS writer Pete Prisco, Sporting News writer Vinnie Lyer, Sports Illustrated's Chris Burke, and the USA Today's Nate Davis. The lowest grade was from ESPN''s Mel Kiper, who gave the Bengals an A-. Putting together the grades and averaging them equal out to a 4.11 GPA for the Bengals. The closest team to the Bengals was AFC North division rival Pittsburgh and their a 3.78 GPA. Mike Ridley from Football Outsiders writes about the Bengals draft:
"Not one analyst had the Bengals lower than an A-, even the ever-fickle Jason Cole. Prisco loves all ten picks, saying the Sanu was the most questionable because he’s not a burner. Burke sees the possibility for the first nine picks to be starters. May the Bungals forever be gone!"
Many draft pundits have praised the Bengals for their work in the draft the past few seasons and many believe that head coach Marvin Lewis has taken more of a hands on approach when it comes to selecting the prospects in the draft. Ridley wrote about Chris Burke speculating that the Bengals first nine picks could be starters. Burke had this to say about the Bengals draft:
"If you didn’t buy the Bengals’ rise last season, this should push you over the top. Cincinnati landed potential starters with each of its first nine picks, led by CB Dre Kirkpatrick (17) and G Kevin Zeitler (27), who should be in the lineup from Day One."
While many think that the Bengals got steals with a few of their picks, there was a reason that these players fall further than expected. Being under-drafted could motivate the newest Bengals and make this draft class even better than how it looks on paper.