2023 NFL Draft grades: Cincinnati Bengals bolstered their defense, and will keep Super Bowl window open

Overall Cincinnati Bengals draft grade: B

The Bengals did a good job with their draft capital this year. Myles Murphy wasn’t a first-round talent on the Yahoo Sports board, but he has a chance to grow into that type of player based on his physical profile. Jordan Battle and cornerback DJ Turner II are quality additions as well for a team that needed to pack on some depth in their secondary. The Bengals' secondary is young, but they’re versatile and Battle can be a linchpin for their safety group. They took a nice upside swing in the sixth round as well with Princeton wide receiver Andrei Iosivas. It was a good draft for the Bengals, who will need these rookies to play well as they tweak their roster for another championship run.

Favorite pick: Jordan Battle, S, Alabama (95th overall)

Battle was made to play in Lou Anarumo’s defense. He’s a smart, technically sound safety who played a whole lot of football for Nick Saban at Alabama during his four years there. Battle played in 52 career games for the Crimson Tide and can man a variety of safety spots in a pinch. His versatility is a great fit for Anarumo, who asks his safeties to do a little bit of everything. Given the fact that the Bengals lost Vonn Bell and Jessie Bates III in free agency, getting a potential starter for them was a big priority coming into the draft this year.

Dec 31, 2022; New Orleans, LA, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Jordan Battle (9) celebrates his interception against the Kansas State Wildcats during the first half in the 2022 Sugar Bowl at Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports
Alabama defensive back Jordan Battle brings versatility to Cincinnati. (Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports)

Least favorite pick: Myles Murphy, EDGE, Clemson (28th overall)

Murphy is a good prospect who should be a productive No. 2 edge defender across from Trey Hendrickson, but it is fair to wonder how consistently he’ll be able to finish sacks in the NFL. Murphy is a great athlete in a straight line, showing the ability to explode off the snap on a routine basis (and he ran a 4.53 40-yard dash!), but he’s not always consistent turning the corner. Picking Murphy here wasn’t necessarily a bad pick, but he may not be a consistent sack-finisher in the NFL.

Full Bengals draft

Clemson EDGE Myles Murphy (R1, 28 overall)

Michigan CB DJ Turner II (R2, 60th)

Alabama S Jordan Battle (R3, 95th)

Purdue WR Charlie Jones (R4, 131st)

Illinois RB Chase Brown (R5, 163rd)

Princeton WR Andrei Iosivas (R6, 206th)

Michigan P Brad Robbins (R6, 217th)

Miami CB D.J. Ivey (R7, 246th)