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Home / Uncategorized / AFC North Preview: Cincinnati Bengals

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Key Pickups: RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis, CB Terence Newman.

After the departure of Cedric Benson, the Bengals really needed to find a solid replacement to support Andy Dalton. I like that they have brought in Green-Ellis, he is a solid back who doesn’t fumble the ball. He’s going to have to carry the ball a little bit more than he did in New England though. Terence Newman will come in and play nicely for the Bengals at a position they are very thin at.

Key Losses: DE Jonathan Fanene, RB Cedric Benson
The Bengals honestly didn’t do too bad when it comes to free agency losses. The biggest loss I could see was DE Jonathan Fanene. Fanene recorded 17 tackles and compiled 6.5 sacks last season and helped the Bengals finish the season with a top 10 ranked defense. RB Cedric Benson wasn’t an entirely huge blow, but one that needed to be taken care of.

Draft Picks/Grade: CB Dre Kirkpatrick, G Kevin Zeitler, DT Devon Still, WR Mohamed Sanu, DT Brandon Thompson, TE Orson Charles, CB
Shaun Prater, WR Marvin Jones, S George Iloka, RB Dan Herron.

You couldn’t ask for more from the Bengals in this year’s draft. They filled all of their teams needs (especially CB and DT) and added some spice to their line-up. The pick up of tight end Orson Charles out of Georgia was huge. Although Orson was charged with a DUI earlier in his career, the Bengals did they right thing by snagging him up. Orson can jump right in and make a huge impact like you see tight ends like Gronkowski and Graham do. This draft class by the Bengals was great, they were stealing players left and right, I give them an A.

Coaching Staff:  In 2010, Marvin Lewis was barely able to hang on to his job as the Head Coach of the Cincinnati Bengals. 2 years later, the Bengals are coming of a surprising season in which they surprised everyone by winning 9 games and advancing
to the playoffs. It seems as if Marvin Lewis isn’t quite on the hot seat anymore, things are little more stable in Cincy. The Bengal also added Hue Jackson as a defensive backs and special teams assistant.

Off-season Changes: I really like the Bengals bringing in former Raiders Head Coach Hue Jackson. Jackson’s experience could really help guide these young players into becoming the work horses the Bengals need them to be.

Offensive player to watch: WR A.J. Green, I shouldn’t even have to remind you to watch this kid, he’s simply electric. After being taken in opening picks of the 2011 NFL Draft, A.J. has been on a mission and hasn’t slowed down. Looking at his stats, you couldn’t even tell that a rookie was throwing him the ball all of last season. There is a lot of pressure on Green this season, but i’m sure he’s ready for it. He is on his way to becoming an elite receiver in this league very soon.

Defensive Player to watch: DT Deno Atkins, Defensive tackle Deno Atkins has quickly become one of the best, if not the best defensive player for Bengals. In his first year as a starter in 2011, he was a league leader for sacks among NFL defensive tackles for most of the season. I’m looking for Atkins to show us more this season and to possibly compete for AFC Defensive Player of the Year, which is no easy task seeing as the AFC is home to defensive powerhouses like Pittsburgh and Baltimore.

Projected outcome: 10-6

 


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