Cincinnati Bengals NFL Draft Options: Who Could Be Some Mid-Round IOL Targets?

Adding to the interior offensive line depth may not be the highest priority for the Cincinnati Bengals, but it definitely is on the to-do list.

CINCINNATICincinnati Bengals interior offensive linemen Ted Karras, Alex Carras, and Cordell Volson have started 99 of a possible 99 games the last two seasons and are projected to be the starters again in 2024.

But Karras is entering the final year of his contract, and Cappa and Volson have two years remaining on their deals.

Behind them, the depth is thin.

Mid-Round IOL Options for the Bengals

Whether it’s adding contingencies or finding eventual replacements, the Bengals should be targeting the interior of the offensive line in the 2024 NFL Draft.

It’s unlikely, but not completely out of the question, they will draft one on the first two days. But with six picks on Day 3, a double dip could be in play.

Here are some of the best fourth- and fifth-round options, with insight from Pro Football Network’s Draft Analyst Ian Cummings and other members of the scouting staff.

Christian Mahogany, Boston College

Christian Mahogany (6’2½”, 318 pounds) checks several boxes for the Bengals as a team captain and three-year starter. He started 34 games at BC — 11 at left guard as a redshirt freshman and the final 23 at right guard.

Mahogany had a chance to enter the NFL following the 2021 season but elected to return to the Eagles and ended up missing the season with an ACL injury. He bounced back and was named first-team All-ACC in 2023 while ranking as PFF’s No. 14-graded guard of the 2024 draft class.

Cummings: “Mahogany grades out as a fringe top-100 prospect in the 2024 NFL Draft and could field consideration in the mid-to-late Day 2 range or as a priority prospect on Day 3. He could transition to center, but as a guard with left and right experience, Mahogany is a proven asset.

“Mahogany is one of the most aggressive attackers in the 2024 NFL Draft OL class. He buries defenders as a puller and a space blocker, and has shocking — at times humorous — point-of-contact power and violence in tight spaces.”

Mason McCormick, South Dakota State

After redshirting in 2018, Mason McCormick appeared in 70 games with 57 starts over the last five seasons, all at left guard.

McCormick (6’4”, 309 pounds) was a two-time consensus All-American and a two-time captain. He’s been playing football since the third grade and turns 24 next month.

Cummings: “McCormick’s strong Shrine Bowl performance and elite athletic testing numbers inflated his stock through the 2024 offseason, and at its highest points, the tape backs up the talent.

“McCormick is experienced and extremely tenacious. Particularly in the running game, he does a lot of the little things well.

“In zone and gap schemes, McCormick can traverse gaps, cover ground, and channel his momentum into point-of-attack power, while staying true to blocking angles. In pass protection, his recovery athleticism serves him well, as does his ability to play square to defenders and his finishing mentality.”

Tanor Bortolini, Wisconsin

A three-year starter for the Badgers, Tanor Bortolini had starts at left guard (eight), right guard (three), right tackle (three), and center (12). His first season playing center was 2023, when he was voted honorable mention All-Big Ten for a second consecutive season.

Bortolini (6’4”, 303 pounds) broke Jason Kelce’s Combine record for the three-cone drill (7.16) among interior offensive linemen.

Cummings: “Two things will stand out immediately as evaluators look at Bortolini’s profile: His hyper-elite athleticism and flexibility, and his in-built positional versatility. Bortolini’s size profile fits best at center, but he has experience across the front.

“It may serve Bortolini well to spend time as a primary depth piece early on, but already, he’s a scheme-versatile run blocker with outside zone, counter, and gap flexibility. In time, he can become an impact two-phase starter with the range and tenacity to be a game-changer.”

Sedrick Van Pran-Granger, Georgia

A three-year starter and two-time team captain, Sedrick Van Pran-Granger started 44 games while leading the Bulldogs to back-to-back national championships.

The 6’4”, 301-pound Van Pran-Granger, a graphic design major, earned an invite to the Senior Bowl and accepted, but he later decided not to participate.

Cummings: “He’s one of the top natural center prospects in the class. Van Pran is compact, powerful, and incredibly explosive, with the flexibility to recover positioning, generate torque, and seal off lanes in the run game. He’s a people-mover in that phase, but he’s also an incredibly alert and combative pass blocker.

“Even with his abundance of experience, Van Pran can still keep refining his hand usage, and while his leverage maintenance has greatly improved since 2021, there are still lapses on tape. The biggest question mark for Van Pran, however, is how he’ll deal with NFL power.”

Satoao Laumea, Utah

Sataoa Laumea (6’4”, 319 pounds) was a four-year starter for the Utes, two at right guard and the last two at right tackle. Laumea graduated with a business degree and earned an invite to the Senior Bowl. He’s 23 but won’t turn 24 until after the regular season.

A.J. Schulte: “The tools are evident on Laumea’s film. His quickness out of his stance is tremendous for his size and helps keep him in front of rushers. Add onto that good play strength, athleticism, and awareness, and it makes Laumea’s floor pretty solid. His competitive toughness will endear him to coaches as well.

“How he hits his ceiling may depend on the team that drafts him. Laumea can play both tackle and guard in the NFL, but he might be quicker to start at guard, as it can keep him “in a booth” and limit his issues against speed rushers around the arc.

“He could sit behind a vet and develop at right tackle, as he has the tools to be a reliable starter if he can iron out some of his inconsistencies.”

Zak Zinter, Michigan

The way the Michigan team reacted and rallied after Zak Zinter’s broken leg in the Ohio State game says as much about him as his tape. But the injury has forced him to miss the entire pre-draft process.

A four-year starter for the Wolverines, Zinter (6’5”, 309 pounds) was voted first-team All-Big Ten twice and was a team captain for the 2023 national champions. He turned 23 on Wednesday.

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Schulte: “Zinter has very good use of his hands when combatting defenders. His punches are quick, accurate, and contain quite a bit of power to jolt pass rushers. He will continue to reset his hands if his initial punch doesn’t land and rarely gets beat fundamentally. In the run game, Zinter’s power shows in his ability to direct and escort defenders out of gaps and seal defenders out of the run.

“His late-season injury put a damper on his draft stock and caused him to miss the entire draft process. It makes his availability as a rookie difficult to project due to the rehabilitation process, but Zinter possesses the ability to be a high-end backup or starter in the NFL and fit in any scheme.”

Delmar Glaze, Maryland

All 32 of his starts for the Terrapins were at tackle (17 at right, 15 at left), but Delmar Glaze (6’4”, 315 pounds) is projected as a mid-round interior option.

Glaze was a team captain in 2023 and earned a degree in family science. He accepted an invite to the Senior Bowl.

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Cummings: “Glaze grades out as a fringe top-100 prospect in the 2024 NFL Draft. At the earliest, he could be worth mid-to-late Day 2 consideration, but he’d be an even better value pick early on Day 3.

“He has actionable experience at left and right tackle and profiles as an immediate swing tackle with starting upside. At 6’4″, 323 pounds, with massive 34 1/2″ arms, Glaze checks a lot of the physical boxes.

“And beyond his measurements, he’s a great athlete whose lateral mobility, in particular, is a major plus. He also brings quality short-area correction and enough explosiveness to close ground and attack in the ground game.”

Beaux Limmer, Arkansas

A three-year starter at guard, Beaux Limmer moved to center for the Razorbacks’ Outback Bowl appearance when a teammate opted out. Limmer started 11 games at center and one at left guard in 2023. He made 41 starts for Arkansas and accepted an invitation to the Senior Bowl.

Schulte: “Limmer showcased good athleticism at the Combine, and it also pops up on film. He’s quick off the line, can easily get to his various landmarks in the run game, and picks up pass rushers smoothly. Despite just starting at center for one year, the experience Limmer built at guard shows on film with his high awareness.

“He’s more of a positional blocker than a true road grader. He’ll struggle to move NFL defenders out of gaps with play strength and is at his best when he is on the move, making him more of a zone-blocking center.

“Ideally, he’s paired with one or two guards with good play strength who can help him on double teams and create better rushing lanes up the middle.”

Hunter Nourzad, Penn State

Hunter Nourzad enrolled in college way back in 2018 at Ivy League school Cornell. He redshirted as a freshman, and the school canceled the season in 2020.

In 2022, Nourzad transferred to Penn State, where he was a two-year starter, playing guard in his first season with the team and center in 2023.

Nourzad (6’3”, 317 pounds) accepted an invitation to the East-West Shrine Game. He’ll turn 25 in November.

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Cummings: “Nourzad has all of the foundational hallmarks you want to see from centers. He’s explosive out of his stance, he acquires leverage easily, he carries tons of force in his punches and extensions, he has stifling anchor strength, and his football IQ ensures that he’s always in the right place.

“There’s still room for Nourzad to improve his footwork and base mechanics, particularly when surveying adjacent gaps and swiveling around blocks in the run game. Additionally, he doesn’t quite have elite flexibility or change of direction, which slightly detracts from his ceiling.”

Miss football? The 2024 NFL Draft is almost here, boss. Pro Football Network has you covered with everything from team draft needs to the Top 100 prospects available. Plus, fire up PFN’s all-new Mock Draft Simulator to put yourself in the general manager’s seat and make all the calls — lone wolf or with your friends!

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