NFL Draft: Bengals take linebacker in third round

The Cincinnati Bengals filled a big need at linebacker, taking North Carolina State’s Germaine Pratt in the third round of the NFL Draft on Friday night.

Pratt, who is listed at 6-foot-2, 240 pounds, started just one year in three seasons with the Wolfpack but played in all 39 games as a valued contributor. He earned first-team All-ACC honors by racking up 104 tackles, a team-high 10.5 for loss, while tying for the team lead with six sacks despite playing in 11 games (all starts) as a senior in 2018.

Some projected him going as high as the second round, but evaluated him as a fourth-round pick. The Bengals took him at No. 72 overall.

The linebacker spot was perceived as the weak spot of the defense last year when Cincinnati allowed a league-worst 413.6 yards and 29th-ranked 28.4 points per game, and the loss of veterans Vontaze Burfict (waived) and Vinny Rey (unsigned in free agency) means the group has even less depth.

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