Thursday, April 11, 2002

Bengals check out potential picks

Conducting physicals on possible draftees

By Mark Curnutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        The Bengals brought in Texas' Mike Williams, who is projected as the second-best offensive tackle in the draft, for a physical Wednesday.

        Williams passed the Bengals' exam.

        The club was worried about Williams' right knee, which he hyperextended in the third game of the season. It was rumored Williams had suffered ligament damage.

        He didn't, and the knee is fine.

        Williams, who is 6 feet 5 and 375 pounds, figures to be a long-term left tackle in the NFL. But he is expected to be gone by the time the Bengals pick at No.10 overall.

        “Everybody likes him,” said Jim Lippincott, the Bengals' player personnel director.

        Williams is the third of 19 draft-eligible players who will come to Cincinnati for a physical before the draft April 20-21. The NFL allows each team 20 such visits.

        “Only for medical reasons,” Lippincott said. “Some teams look at just guys in the first round. We look at players we don't have medical information on and who we might like to draft anywhere.”

        The Bengals have had visits from tackle Jeff Hartwig of Kansas and wide receiver Edell Shepherd of San Jose State.

        The Bengals will have 16 players visit Friday for physicals, but none has Williams' profile as a first-round pick, Lippincott said.


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