Ohio State's top offensive lineman in this year's NFL draft is off the board.
The Cincinnati Bengals selected former Buckeye guard and center Michael Jordan with the No. 136 overall pick in the fourth round of the 2019 NFL draft on Saturday.
Jordan's selection marks the third straight year that Ohio State's center from the previous season has been drafted – and the second straight year that offensive lineman has been drafted by the Bengals. The Bengals also selected Billy Price with the No. 21 overall pick in the 2018 draft, while the Minnesota Vikings selected Pat Elflein (No. 70 overall) in the third round of the 2017 draft.
Like Price and Elflein, Jordan spent his final season at Ohio State starting at center after lining up at guard – in his case, left guard – for the rest of his career. That gives him the versatility to potentially play either position in the NFL, though he has stated that his preference is to play guard, and now that he is on the same team as Price, it's likely he will go back to guard to play alongside Price.
"Whenever you come down I'm only a call or text away, just like I was at Ohio State."— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) April 27, 2019
Brothers and teammates again! @BigMikeJ73 & @b_price53 catch up after they are reunited with the @Bengals #GoBucks #DevelopedHere #NewDEY pic.twitter.com/wHyHQOSzyA
While Jordan went to high school in Michigan, he was born in Cincinnati and grew up rooting for the Bengals, so being drafted by the Bengals on Saturday was a dream come true.
"It's been a dream of mine to play for the Cincinnati Bengals since I was a little kid," Jordan said in his conference call with Bengals reporters after being drafted, according to Fletcher Page of the Cincinnati Enquirer.
Jordan started every single game of his three-year career as a Buckeye, becoming the first Ohio State offensive lineman to do that since Orlando Pace. He started 27 consecutive games at left guard before finishing his career with 14 consecutive starts at center.
Jordan wasn't drafted nearly as high as Pace, who was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1997 NFL draft, so he probably won't be an immediate starter in the NFL like Pace, who went on to be a Pro Football Hall of Fame. Nonetheless, he'll have a chance to carve out his own successful career at the next level as a Day 3 pick.
With Clint Boling at left guard, Jordan's best opportunity to compete for a starting job as a rookie in Cincinnati could come at right guard, where returning starter Alex Redmond and free-agent addition John Miller are also expected to compete for the starting job.
He's the third Buckeye in two years to be drafted by the Bengals, joining Price and Sam Hubbard from last year's draft, and the seventh Ohio State player selected in this year's draft.