The Cincinnati Bengals, who lost the likes of Michael Johnson and Anthony Collins to free agency last year, were awarded two compensatory draft picks Monday at the NFL owners meetings -- one in the third round and one in the fourth round. As a result, they now have nine selections in the 2015 NFL draft, which will be held April 30 to May 2 in Chicago.
Coincidentally, Johnson just re-signed with the team earlier this month. Still, the Bengals were credited with a compensatory pick due to his free-agency departure last year.
This is the third consecutive year the Bengals have been awarded two compensatory draft picks. Since 1994, the year the NFL first began recognizing compensatory picks, the Bengals have had 24.
Last season, they had compensatory picks in the sixth and seventh rounds, using them on linebacker Marquis Flowers and cornerback Lavelle Westbrooks, respectively. Flowers spent his rookie season as a backup and played on special teams. Although coaches were high on Westbrooks during training camp, he didn't end up making the 53-man roster.
In addition to the new picks in the third and fourth round, the Bengals also have standard picks in every round, including the third and fourth. Their first-round pick is at No. 21 overall, the second-round pick is at No. 53 overall, and the other third-round selection will come at 85th overall.