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2013 NFL Draft Fallout: Cincinnati Bengals

The 2013 NFL Draft transformed 32 NFL rosters. Around The League will examine the aftershocks in our Draft Fallout series. Next up: The Cincinnati Bengals.

The Big Question: Can Dalton make the most of his new weapons?

On the heels of yet another productive draft haul by the Bengals, quarterback Andy Dalton acknowledged, "There shouldn't be any excuses."

Not after Cincinnati used its top two picks to add tight end Tyler Eifert (at No. 21) and running back Giovani Bernard (at No. 37) to an increasingly juicy offense.

Eifert gives Dalton a dynamic playmaker who can terrorize in space and stretch the seam. He'll pair with Jermaine Gresham to give the Bengals one of the league's more intriguing tight end tandems. The Bengals had other needs, but Cincy -- drafting well in recent years -- wasn't afraid to go "best player available" with the first of its 10 selections. Expect to see plenty of trendy, double tight end sets from the Bengals in 2013, which should open up A.J. Green down field.

Meanwhile, Bernard addresses a core need. BenJarvus Green-Ellis isn't featured-back material, but Bernard gives Cincy a run game built to compete in the rugged AFC North. Toss in young pass-catchers Mohamed Sanu, Marvin Jones and impressive slot man Andrew Hawkins, and Dalton, indeed, is on the hook to flip the switch.

Three takeaways

  1. Mike Brown has turned a corner. The team owner and president has long been a whipping boy for frustrated Bengals fans, but Brown deserves credit. A string of quality, deep drafts have reshaped the Bengals into a savvy operation, giving at least one angry website much less to moan about.
  1. While we're talking front office, the Bengals patiently pushed to re-sign right tackle Andre Smith, and the deal came through just prior to the second round.

Instead of burning a pick on Smith's replacement, the Bengals locked up the NFL's fourth-best offensive tackle, per ProFootballFocus, to a three-year, $18 million contract. Another coup for Marvin Lewis and Co.

  1. Full disclosure: I'm a lifelong Cleveland Browns fan, and felt a massive disturbance in the Force after Cincy snatched up 6-foot-8, 277-pound Margus Hunt.

It's easy to see why the SMU defensive end was placed on earth, to grind quarterbacks into dust -- especially those clad in orange and brown tones. #Darkness.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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