John Ross: A Speedy Selection for the Bengals
The Cincinnati Bengals shocked most experts and fans with their selection of wide receiver John Ross in the 2017 NFL Draft. The Bengals scheduled a last minute impromptu visit with Ross prior to the draft. During this visit, Ross was able to strike up a great vibe with Marvin Lewis and his staff. With an early run on receivers in the draft, the Bengals wasted no time selecting Ross.
Below we review the “Prime” grade assigned to Ross and how things played out.
The coaching staff considered #1 Prime ranked prospect O.J. Howard but determined the lack of depth chart flexibility was too much of a hassle. Jonathan Allen was ranked next to Howard on Prime and was said to be considered as well. Ross was deemed by us to be an unlikely target for the Bengals but was the third ranked Prime option at wide receiver in the first round. The history of the Bengals’ size preference at receiver and a poor medical grade resulted in a final Prime grade of 3.94 for Ross. The poor medical grade assigned was calculated based on the number of missed games and injuries Ross suffered while at Washington.
The Bengals’ medical staff did not take issue with John’s medical history.When we eliminated the medical grade from the Prime formula for Ross, he moved up from 3.94 to 4.75. This would’ve made Ross the highest graded receiver for the Bengals in the first round. Bright marks for Ross in Prime were his scheme fit, production, and age. These were major attributes of receivers the Bengals have taken in the past. Removing medical concerns with the early run at the position backs up why Ross was the pick for the Bengals at nine.