INDIANAPOLIS - If it looks like the Bengals are running out of players to pick from with the sixth pick in the draft, it's just paranoia.
Have no fear. NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock is sure the Bengals won't have to reach for a player not good enough to take that high.
"There are two quarterbacks that have some upside but I'm not fully convinced yet, and eight guys that can come in and play in the NFL," Mayock said Sunday after getting off the air.
But will one of those eight guys be a fit? For example, Mayock said No. 6 is too rich for Boston College defensive tackle B.J. Raji.
"That's a little bit of a reach," Mayock said. "At No. 6 you better make sure he's a three-down defensive tackle and gets after the quarterback a little bit. He's a two-gap player, a run-stuffer, and he can push the pocket, but ... "
Mayock says the Rams at No. 2 have to look hard at a tackle and Seattle at No. 4 now has to study Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree real hard because not only does he have a foot stress fracture but he's merely 6-1 3/8 instead of 6-3.
If two tackles, Crabtree, and linebacker Aaron Curry are gone before six, Mayock says the Bengals can look at the other two tackles, as well as Texas defensive end Brian Orakpo. He gives Orakpo the nod over Florida State's Everette Brown "because he's bigger, stronger, more physical and has a better history of producing."
"There's no reason they shouldn't be able to get a good player at No. 6," Mayock said. "When the process plays out, there will be seven, eight, nine guys you'll be comfortable with."
Mayock's two top centers are Cincinnati's Eric Wood via Louisville and Oregon's Max Unger, followed by Cal's Alex Mack. He has them all going in the second round, but wouldn't be surprised if one of them went late in the first.
He wasn't turned off by Wood not having top 40-yard dash time. "I know what he is," Mayock said, and that's a strongman. Wood had a top 10 30 reps among offensive linemen in the bench press.
Mayock was blown away by West Virginia quarterback Pat White in Sunday's workout at Lucas Oil Stadium. "Pat White threw the hell out of the ball," he said.