I was pretty shocked that Marvin Jones fell all the way to the 5th round in the NFL draft. But if you're going to fall in the draft, you may as well fall into a good spot. Cincinnati may just be that spot. In Andrew Dalton the Bengals might have their franchise QB, and in A.J. Green they have their franchise #1 WR. But the #2 and #3 WR spots are up for grabs, and that means Marvin should get his shot.
To get a sense of what the Bengals hope to get from Marvin and what kind of role he might start with, we talked to Josh Kirkendall from CincyJungle. And to help Bengals fans learn a little about what Marvin will bring to Ohio, we answered some questions over there. Thanks Josh!
1. Was Marvin Jones on your radar before the draft? Whom else did you have an eye on to fill the Bengals' WR need?
The need at wide receiver for Cincinnati was fairly noticeable, especially after the Bengals No. 2 receiver, Jerome Simpson left for the Minnesota Vikings. So names like Michael Floyd and Kendall Wright were up on our list, mostly because we believed the Bengals would use one of their two first-round picks on a wide receiver. They had also expressed interest in Mohamed Sanu (before drafting him), Devin Goda, Marvin McNutt, D.J. Woods and Justin Hilton (before signing him as an undrafted free agent).
We had targeted Jones as a potential mid-round pick but the Bengals reported interest appeared non-existent.
2. What role do you see Marvin Jones filling? Jerome Simpson's old role?
We’re projecting that he’ll compete for the No. 2 spot, with Mohamed Sanu (who they drafted ahead of Jones) and possibly Armon Binns.
3. How do you view the Jones pick: good value or worry about why he fell to the 5th round?
Good value. This draft wasn’t so much about valuing talent in the "best player available" sense as it was the overall emphasis to address a team’s needs. And frankly we’re more excited that he was available by the time Cincinnati picked than worried about why he might have fallen.
4. From what you know and have seen of Marvin, what do you like?
I like his release off the line, overall adjustable body control and his size. Screams as an ideal No. 2 receiver, helping to relieve some of the opposing defense’s focus on A.J. Green. He might be the team’s best-suited No. 2 when it’s all said and done.
5. Why do you think Jones fell so far?
Since Jones was graded and projected as a mid-round talent, and since wide receivers were often considered the deepest position in the draft, it’s likely that he was just stuck at a position that was entirely too deep. Other than that, I can’t honestly say.
6. What does the depth chart above Jones look like for the Bengals?
Really depends on how the position settles down. If Jones wins the competition for the No. 2 spot, then he’s a starter. Inability to do that and he could be listed fairly deep on the depth chart – especially with the Bengals over-stocked at slot receiver. Possibly a backup to the No. 2, the player that would theoretically beat out Jones during the training camp competition battles.
But I’m suspecting Jones will have a fairly impressionable future in Cincinnati’s offense.
7. In watching video of Marvin Jones, can you compare him to any present or past Bengal wide receivers?
Great body control, adjustable with the football in the air and overall awareness, I’d say the receiver he most resembles, at least partially, would be T.J. Houshmandzadeh. Hopefully with time he continues strengthening his upper-body to block out linebackers and safeties during underneath routes in zone coverages (something Houshmandzadeh excelled at in Cincinnati).