Walton Move Puts RBs on Draft Agenda

Next Man up Behind Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard: Quinton Flowers.
Next Man up Behind Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard: Quinton Flowers.

With Saturday's release of second-year running back Mark Walton, the Bengals figure to be in the college market for a similar type of third-down back behind starter Joe Mixon and No. 1 third-down back Giovani Bernard before they look at veteran free agents

They currently have second-year running back Quinton Flowers on the roster, the transplanted South Florida quarterback that spent his rookie season on the practice squad. With eleven picks in the April 25-27 draft, five of them in the sixth round, the Bengals project to come out of the weekend with as many as three running backs between the draft and college free agency.

If that doesn't satisfy them they could still head into the back-glutted group of veteran free agents.

Walton, last season's fourth-round pick out of Miami, played sparingly (19 touches, 14 of them runs) before an offseason reports say he was arrested three times.

The last incident came last week, days before new head coach Zac Taylor is to unveil his program at the start of the off-season workouts. His statement in the wake of Walton's release arrived less than 72 hours before he holds his first team meeting on Tuesday.

"It's important for our team to get off to a fresh start as we begin the 2019 season," Taylor said in a news release. "For that reason, we felt it best if we move forward without Mark Walton. We hope his situation gets resolved, but we don't want to take anything away from the good work that so many other players have already begun to demonstrate."