Devon Still

Draft Grades: Cincinnati Bengals

The Cincinnati Bengals put together the best draft class, at least on paper, that I have ever seen in the nine years I’ve been covering the draft. Of their 10 selections, I gave a 3rd-round grade or better to eight players, and the other two received 4th-round evaluations. This was the best draft class of the year, and there isn’t a close second.

Dre Kirkpatrick was overrated by the media early in the draft process, which created the perception that his stock started to slip during the draft process. He’s not as physical as you’d like, and he’s still developing his coverage technique, but the Bengals have the depth at cornerback to bring him along slowly.

Kevin Zeitler was a reach in the 1st round, especially with Cordy Glenn still on the board. But he does have the ability to step into an immediate starting role at right guard.

Devon Still doesn’t necessarily fill a need, but was a great value pick for the Bengals in the 2nd round. He will back up Geno Atkins and should be used as part of the defensive line rotation from day one.

Mohamed Sanu is one of the more underrated prospects in this draft class and could win a starting job in training camp. Due to ineffective quarterback play at Rutgers, his role was limited to that of a possession receiver, but he has the size and speed to develop into more of a true No. 1. Obviously in Cincinnati he’ll always be the No. 2 behind A.J. Green, but he has more raw talent than most No. 2 receivers.

Brandon Thompson was purely a value pick, especially after they already picked up Still in the 2nd round. He’ll compete for playing time with Domato Peko and Pat Sims in the nose tackle role.

The hype surrounding Orson Charles was purely a media creation, so it was not a surprise to see him fall to the 4th round. And while I think he was one of the most overrated prospects in this draft class, he’s a solid pickup for the Bengals. He’s essentially an oversized receiver, which is exactly the role he’ll play in Cincinnati. He’s not a threat to Jermaine Gresham’s job, but they’ll find ways to work him into the game plan.

Shaun Prater will have to fight hard to earn a spot on the final roster, but could be helped if the Bengals decide to cut ties with Nate Clements. He has the skills to win a job, but the secondary is suddenly very crowded in Cincinnati.

Marvin Jones may prove to be the steal of the draft. He lacks elite athleticism, but makes up for by being one of the most efficient route runners in this year’s class. The difference between him and Sanu is minimal, and Jones may actually be more NFL ready.

George Iloka is built like a strong safety but tackles like a kicker, which lead to his fall. He’s a developmental prospect who probably shouldn’t see the field until he improves his tackling technique, but he definitely had value in the 5th round based on his raw talent.

Boom Herron is to running backs what Marvin Jones is to receivers. He’s not the biggest, strongest or fastest player on the field but he’s smart and gets the job done. The Bengals have a crowded backfield right now, so Herron has his work cut out for him, but don’t be surprised to see him receive some significant carries this season if he impresses during training camp.

From top to bottom this was the strongest draft class. The Bengals landed better players in the 5th and 6th round than some teams landed in the 2nd and 3rd. They upgraded their depth at multiple positions and are now poised to make a serious run at the Steelers and Ravens. If this class pans out as expected, there will be a new powerhouse in the AFC North within the next three years.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Bengals, Draft Grades - 2012 Leave a comment

Devon Still scouting report

Devon Still DT Penn State #71
Ht: 6’5″

Wt: 307

Strengths:
Prototypical height and overall size. A strong, physical player. Relies on his bull rush to get into the backfield, which often draws double teams. Long, strong arms are very active when he’s working as a pass rusher. Flashes the ability to dominate; very difficult to block in a one-on-one matchup when he wants to be. NFL bloodlines; cousins Art Still and Levon Kirkland played in the league.
Weaknesses:
Inconsistent. Gets pushed around too frequently, often by lesser talent. Gets tossed to the ground far too often for a guy his size. Struggles against the run; gets knocked back on his heels and fails to hold his ground at the point of attack. Limited athletically. Doesn’t make plays in pursuit. Isn’t always explosive off the snap. Inconsistent effort; perhaps a conditioning issue? Missed entire 2007 season with torn ACL. Benched for part of a game in 2010 for violation of team rules.
Comments:
Still has starter potential, and has even shown flashes of Pro Bowl ability, but he is far too inconsistent. He showed some improvement in 2010, but it still looks like he takes plays off – an indication of either an effort or conditioning issue. His lack of quickness and inconsistent explosion off the snap limits his effectiveness as a pass rusher, which makes his uninspired performance against the run that much more concerning. Still is definitely a boom-or-bust prospect.
Videos:
2011 vs Alabama
2011 vs Illinois 

 

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2012 Leave a comment