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Cincinnati takes Jonah Williams with No. 11 pick

Jonah Williams

The Cincinnati Bengals selected University of Alabama offensive lineman Jonah Williams with the 11th overall pick of the 2019 NFL draft.

Williams, 6-foot-4 and 302 pounds, was considered by many as the top offensive lineman in this draft class. He was the first offensive lineman chosen on Thursday night, ahead of SEC counterpart and the University of Florida’s Jawaan Taylor.

One of the most decorated players in the high school class of 2016, Williams began his career with the Crimson Tide at right tackle, where he earned Freshman All-American honors after starting 15 games, helping pave the way for a team that advanced to the national title game. He moved to the left side as a sophomore, replacing first-round pick Cam Robinson, and immediately established himself as a force, being named First-Team All-SEC and Third-Team All-American by the Associated Press as Alabama won the College Football Playoff. Williams’ best season came last year, as a junior, when he was named a consensus All-American and finalist for the Outland Trophy, again helping the Crimson Tide to an appearance in the national championship game.

Draft analysts count Williams as one of the most technically sound tackles to enter the NFL in recent memory. Though he didn’t stand out at the NFL combine in February, with just 23 bench press reps and measuring shorter in terms of height and arm length than anticipated, he nevertheless left Indianapolis retaining his standing as a potential first-round pick.

Expect Williams, still just 21, to immediately compete for a starting spot with the Bengals.