2. Cincinnati Bengals (No. 29)
I just don’t see this as the most likely scenario unless the Bengals decided to trade up in the first round because Michael Mayer likely isn’t falling to No. 29, barring a surprise.
But some mocks have the Bengals going tight end in round one which means they might be extra motivated to aim for the best which is Mayer. He could help replace Hayden Hurts who was on a one-year deal with the Bengals this past season and played pretty well. It’s clear that Joe Burrow throws to his tight ends, so why not aim for a guy who has been called Baby Gronk.
Hurst could still re-sign with the Bengals, but I doubt Cincinnati will want to pay a big price for him when they could just get his replacement in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Cincinnati isn’t missing a lot of pieces as you could tell from their playoff runs in back-to-back years but an elite tight end would take that already-explosive offense to the next level.
Imagine an offense with Tee Higgins, Ja’Marr Chase, Burrow, Joe Mixon, and Mayer. That’d be a scary sight.