2023 Bengals: Run it Back

Rudy's Curve

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With the announcement Arizona did not choose Lou Anarumo for its coaching vacancy, the Bengals will return the head coach and all three coordinators for the fifth straight year. That kind of continuity is pretty tough to achieve in today's NFL, as only the Chiefs have also had the same structure in place in that time period. Given Anarumo, OC Brian Callahan and QB coach Dan Pitcher all interviewed for promotions this cycle, there's a good chance more than one of them is gone next year. They're always going to be competitive as long as Burrow is there, but there's a lot of pressure to win it all this year given how close they've been, the stars still being under contract for cheap and the potential staff/personnel turnover going forward. Thankfully, they'll be running almost the same team back (fair or not, Higgins isn't getting traded for anything short of a Ricky Williams package) and that combined with the coaching continuity create a real opportunity to bring the first Lombardi to Cincinnati.

Key Free Agents
- Jessie Bates will be the biggest loss, as the star safety has been destined to eventually hit free agency since they couldn't come to terms before the 2021 season. They tried again last offseason after franchising him but talks predictably went nowhere. Thankfully, they've been preparing for it as they used a first-round pick on Dax Hill last year. Hill was shuffled around as a rookie and played sparingly on defense, but he checked almost all the measurables and production boxes as a prospect and should be a really good player.
- Fellow safety Vonn Bell is also up for free agency. He played his last contract on a 3/18 deal, and I could see something similar although two years would be ideal. He's a leader on defense who can still play and will be needed back with the loss of Bates.
- LB Germaine Pratt took a huge step forward this year and will hit the market at 26. Given the extensions coming up (including possibly fellow LB Logan Wilson), the replacements in house and it not being a premium position, I don't see the Bengals paying market rate here.
- Eli Apple talks a lot of shit and takes a lot of it too, but he's given them solid CB2 play for two years. Given top corner Chidobe Awuzie is coming off a torn ACL and you can never have enough corners, I'd like to see him brought back on another one-year deal. Cam Taylor-Britt will certainly be starting at one spot, so Apple can start if Awuzie needs to be brought along slowly or be quality depth.
- TE Hayden Hurst signed a one-year, prove it deal last year and pretty much proved he's JAG. His energy was definitely a positive, but he only averaged 8 YPC (and it wasn't because he scored a bunch of short TDs) and it's a number that's gone down every year while he'll be 30 by Week 1. It's a tough position for rookie impact, but they need to find one in the draft and try to shoot higher for 2023 production.

Cut Candidates
- Joe Mixon certainly checks the boxes for this one. He's going to be 27 in July with almost 1500 carries and saw his efficiency drop last year despite the league's rise overall. He's a liability in pass protection and was outsnapped by backup Samaje Perine in the AFCCG. I'd imagine they'll wait and see if they find a solution in the draft, but ideally they'll move on.
- RT La'el Collins was still able to move people in the run game and held up against bigger rushers, but he was toast against speed and I can't see that getting any better. He'll be 30 in July, is coming off a torn ACL suffered late in the year and has back problems. They can't count on him to be a quality starter, and this is a spot they'll need to find a replacement in FA or the draft as backup Hakeem Adeniji can't be a starter either for a SB contender.

The Schedule
For a first-place schedule in the 17-game era, it's not bad at all. They have to play at KC (opening night?) and get the Bills at home, but their crossover game is against the Vikings who are a giant regression candidate while they also get the unimposing AFC South and NFC West. They'll have to play better in the division if they want a chance as the 1-seed, as they only went 3-3 last year and every other team should be competitive at least. The AFC North has also never been won by the same team three years in a row and has only even been won three out of four years by the same team twice despite the Browns never being in contention.

While they came closer last year than they did this year, last offseason was spent trying to figure out if they could still be really good when fewer things (Chase go balls, schedule, injuries) went their way. The answer was a resounding yes, and now they've taken the step into title or bust territory. While it's a scary prospect as a fan, it's also no place you'd rather be. This is as excited as I'll be for a season since at least 2015, when they probably had the best roster in the league before an untimely Dalton injury when he was playing at an MVP level and some other stuff ruined the season. It's good they generally stay out of trouble with the cap, but this is the year they need to be all-in.
 
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Bergs

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I'm fairly certain this team with a healthy O-line would have won the Super Bowl this year. Looking forward to seeing Burrow's year 4.
 

Rudy's Curve

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I'm fairly certain this team with a healthy O-line would have won the Super Bowl this year. Looking forward to seeing Burrow's year 4.
You could make a real argument. Cappa's absence in the AFCCG was enormous as that's where Jones did most of the damage. While they might've struggled on paper against the Philly pass rush, the field certainly would've neutralized a lot of it. The entire franchise history is littered with what could've been - now it's time to go get it.
 

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the bengals are my favs to win the super bowl or at least get there
I don’t want to say it has to be the year, but they might never have a better shot. They’ll be running back almost the same roster with unmatched coaching/coordinator continuity while they get the AFC South/NFC West/Vikings, which isn’t bad for an AFC first place schedule. They just can’t afford a slow start (Burrow’s appendectomy + breaking in new OL + adjusting to more two-high looks all combined for that) and have to play better in the division if they want the 1-seed. It would certainly be nice if the AFC West could beat the Chiefs a couple times (cough cough, your Broncos).
 

j-man

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I don’t want to say it has to be the year, but they might never have a better shot. They’ll be running back almost the same roster with unmatched coaching/coordinator continuity while they get the AFC South/NFC West/Vikings, which isn’t bad for an AFC first place schedule. They just can’t afford a slow start (Burrow’s appendectomy + breaking in new OL + adjusting to more two-high looks all combined for that) and have to play better in the division if they want the 1-seed. It would certainly be nice if the AFC West could beat the Chiefs a couple times (cough cough, your Broncos).
well to be honest other than the 27-0 kc got aga us we played them almost as well as u did idk if denver is better than 500 as a football team but they have beten denver 15 times in a row that is due to end
its like the afc champ game should had gone into ot

but going in to this year as long as u stay healhy u are the fav in the afc on paper
 

Rudy's Curve

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well to be honest other than the 27-0 kc got aga us we played them almost as well as u did idk if denver is better than 500 as a football team but they have beten denver 15 times in a row that is due to end
its like the afc champ game should had gone into ot

but going in to this year as long as u stay healhy u are the fav in the afc on paper
It's pretty incredible, unfortunately - Peyton was the last Broncos QB to do it and Torey Lovullo was managing the Sox at the time. I'm not sure if they share a record with the Pats' 15 in a row over the Bills (and they're amazingly at 14 now over the Jets), but hopefully the Broncos don't break it.

I think the Chiefs are still the favorites. The best hope is they're worse on offense - obviously Mahomes will still be great, but hopefully Kelce finally starts to decline, they have trouble potentially replacing their tackles and Bieniemy's loss is felt. I think their defense will be pretty good - they played a ton of rookies last year who got better as the season went on and Spagnuolo has been there a while. They also get all their hardest games (BUF/CIN/PHI) at home - their toughest road game is Jacksonville? New England? Minnesota? Green Bay? The Bengals might have to beat them at Arrowhead to get the 1-seed. Of course, the Bills did it the last two years and it still wasn't enough.
 
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j-man

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It's pretty incredible, unfortunately - Peyton was the last Broncos QB to do it and Torey Lovullo was managing the Sox at the time. I'm not sure if they share a record with the Pats' 15 in a row over the Bills (and they're amazingly at 14 now over the Jets), but hopefully the Broncos don't break it.

I think the Chiefs are still the favorites. The best hope is they're worse on offense - obviously Mahomes will still be great, but hopefully Kelce finally starts to decline, they have trouble potentially replacing their tackles and Bieniemy's loss is felt. I think their defense will be pretty good - they played a ton of rookies last year who got better as the season went on and Spagnuolo has been there a while. They also get all their hardest games (BUF/CIN/PHI) at home - their toughest road game is Jacksonville? New England? Minnesota? Green Bay? The Bengals might have to beat them at Arrowhead to get the 1-seed. Of course, the Bills did it the last two years and it still wasn't enough.
well last year i thought kc was going to have a down year and i was wrong the afc west as a whole is harder than most think it is
LAC always has a lot of talent they are just held back by bad juju
Den almost always has a good def just never has had a lot of off since 2014 in 2015 without that all time Def denver was a 8-8 team
Vegas it just seems if they played every team as hard as they do denver they would win a lot more
 

Rudy's Curve

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I was resigned to losing Pratt after a career year and his outspoken desire to play more on third down, but this is completely affordable. It's the same contract they gave Preston Brown before 2019 and he was cut the day after the Lamar spin move game (man, those were the days). Next up is bringing back Vonn Bell - he's on the back half at 28 but there's still decent gas left in the tank, and they could really use him next to Dax Hill as they break him in.
 
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Rudy's Curve

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And right on cue, Bell is gone:

View: https://twitter.com/RapSheet/status/1635361890246479872?s=20

This will be the biggest question this season as they break in two new safeties, as Bates is almost assuredly also gone. Dax Hill will certainly be one of them, but the other spot is up in the air. They liked Tycen Anderson a lot as a fifth-rounder last year, but he spent the whole year on IR. Juan Thornhill is a possibility as a productive player going into his second contract - he's only 10 months younger than Bell though. Julian Love is also a possibility as an ascending player about to turn 25.
 
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Rudy's Curve

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The Bengals pulled off a stunner last night in signing Orlando Brown Jr. Not only was it out of the blue, but it's a pool (huge guarantees) they've just never swam in before. Given what McGlinchey got though, it looks completely fine. The deal is also set up for huge cap hits early when the rest of the core are still low, and they can get out of it after two or three years pretty easily. Brown allowed a decent amount of pressure in his two years at LT in Kansas City after being an elite RT in Baltimore, but he's still square in his prime turning 27 in a couple months and takes the pressure off them finding a Day 1 starter at #28. This moves Jonah Williams to RT, where he's at least got some experience there having played it his freshman year at Alabama. It also signals they'll let him walk after he plays this year on the fifth-year option.

On other fronts, I'd like to see them bring Eli Apple back - if his market last year was any indication, he's one of the most undervalued assets in the league as he provides CB2 play at a depth price. With Chidobe Awuzie coming off an ACL in October, they could certainly use said depth opposite Cam Taylor-Britt. They also need a safety after losing Jessie Bates and Vonn Bell - Dax Hill will take Bates' spot, but they'll need to go externally for Bell. They're hosting Nick Scott of the Rams today who made a bunch of plays during their Super Bowl run and might have some untapped potential having just become a starter last year, although he's already turning 28 in a couple months. They'll need a tight end too as Hayden Hurst signed a deal in Carolina they were never going to match. I can see them double dipping there in the draft given how deep a class it is, but they'll need a vet as it's a position that rarely produces rookie impact. Given Burrow has gotten two total JAGs (CJ Uzomah and Hurst) paid the last two offseasons, a one-year deal for someone looking to reestablish their value (Mike Gesicki?) seems pretty enticing.
 
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Rudy's Curve

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I’d love to have someone like Pac-Man back there again, but Taylor is perfectly fine. He’s better than the Brandon Tates and Alex Ericksons that have come through and aside from one bad unforced fumble in New Orleans last year, his ball security has generally been good. I imagine they’ll have a new punter, as Drue Chrisman couldn’t get the job until incumbent Kevin Huber was intolerably bad and his lack of hangtime killed them at the worst possible time at the end of the AFCCG.
 

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In a bit of a surprise, Nick Scott is headed to Cincinnati instead of one of the bigger safety names. He made a bunch of plays during the Rams’ Super Bowl run and stepped into a starting role last year, but he’ll already be 28 in a couple months. The Bengals seem to be betting on the lack of mileage though and for what it’s worth, a friend who was on the Rams’ defensive staff said he’d rather have him than Rapp.
 

Rudy's Curve

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Well, so much for having a year of Jonah Williams on the right side as he's now requested a trade - it seems he wants to be paid like a left tackle and I can't blame him. They also signed swingman Cody Ford yesterday and listed him as a tackle. I imagine he'll be in competition on the right side with La'el Collins (if he gets healthy) and Jackson Carman, plus a potential rookie. Ford and Collins aren't particularly exciting options at this stage, so hopefully Carman continues his momentum from the playoffs in camp or a high pick steps up and takes it.

They also didn't close the deal with Nick Scott as there's competition from the Rams to retain him - Jordan Schultz of The Score (who's generally been reliable) reported it was a done deal and then deleted the tweet without an explanation. They'll have to move on to another option at TE too with Gesicki signing with the Pats, although there was never really any smoke with the Bengals. Foster Moreau is a decent all-around player who could be an upgrade on Hurst, plus he played with Burrow at LSU for a year.
 

Rudy's Curve

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Interesting, because that guy has been a hack and a troll for years. He makes shit up routinely to get followers.
I'll take your word for it - I don't even follow him and was just seeing him QTd on my timeline. This is certainly a big swing and a miss.
 

Rudy's Curve

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They finally closed the deal with Nick Scott last night as he'll be the strong safety, replacing Vonn Bell. Scott is a very old player coming off his rookie deal turning 28 in May, but there may be some more mileage than usual as he didn't play a ton on defense his first three years. He was huge in the Rams' Super Bowl run before becoming a starter last year and should offer more flexibility than Bell. It'll be tough breaking in two new safeties, but they'll have all offseason and camp to do it and Lou Anarumo is a DB guy by trade. That leaves TE and RB as the two big needs remaining they could attack in free agency and always use some more DL depth.
 
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Auger34

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Well, so much for having a year of Jonah Williams on the right side as he's now requested a trade - it seems he wants to be paid like a left tackle and I can't blame him. They also signed swingman Cody Ford yesterday and listed him as a tackle. I imagine he'll be in competition on the right side with La'el Collins (if he gets healthy) and Jackson Carman, plus a potential rookie. Ford and Collins aren't particularly exciting options at this stage, so hopefully Carman continues his momentum from the playoffs in camp or a high pick steps up and takes it.
Let’s assume Jonah backs off of the trade demand. What would be the Bengals starting OL assuming full health across the board? I would assume Collins is a starter after the contract they gave him no?
 

Rudy's Curve

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Let’s assume Jonah backs off of the trade demand. What would be the Bengals starting OL assuming full health across the board? I would assume Collins is a starter after the contract they gave him no?
His deal makes him easily cuttable and they can't go into the year with him starting - he's coming off a torn ACL in late December after battling back problems all season and turns 30 in camp. He might be completely finished. Brown will be the LT, the interior of Cordell Volson, Ted Karras and Alex Cappa remains unchanged and Williams would be the RT. If they're going to trade Williams, they need to be really confident either a first-round pick or Jackson Carman can fill the shoes right away. They can't trust Collins and newly signed Cody Ford isn't a starting-caliber tackle.
 

Rudy's Curve

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Most of the veteran TEs have been swooped up (and Foster Moreau, who might've been their best option, had to step away from football), leaving the Bengals in a bit of a tough position. Irv Smith Jr. seems to be the best upside option left, but he's only played eight ineffective games the last two years after tearing his ACL before 2021. They were certainly going to take one swing at this deep draft class and now it may be two. I would also expect them to re-sign Drew Sample, their best blocking TE who missed last year after a Week 1 injury. They haven't brought in any outside backs either after losing Samaje Perine to Denver - it's looking more like Joe Mixon will still be here, but he'll have to take a pay cut. The second round has been their RB sweet spot the last decade with Gio Bernard, Jeremy Hill and Mixon all drafted there. I imagine you'll see a decent amount of smoke on UCLA's Zach Charbonnet (thoughts on him and the class in general, @SMU_Sox ?) in the late second.
 
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SMU_Sox

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Full disclosure @Rudy's Curve I haven't done RBs in depth yet but I am a huge fan of Charbonnet. This is a deep class with a lot of potential starters and contributors. I wouldn't sleep on Zach Evans either.
 

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Full disclosure @Rudy's Curve I haven't done RBs in depth yet but I am a huge fan of Charbonnet. This is a deep class with a lot of potential starters and contributors. I wouldn't sleep on Zach Evans either.
Thanks as always - Charbonnet certainly looks the part. If they wanted to wait for the middle rounds, Tyjae Spears seems like a nice fit there and I'd love to take a flyer if they can on Israel Abanikanda as he doesn't turn 21 until October.
 

SMU_Sox

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Thanks as always - Charbonnet certainly looks the part. If they wanted to wait for the middle rounds, Tyjae Spears seems like a nice fit there and I'd love to take a flyer if they can on Israel Abanikanda as he doesn't turn 21 until October.
Spears is a binkie of mine - he should be a 15 carries a game guy. Don't know if he can be a bell-cow but it doesn't matter. Fantastic RB and scheme versatile.
 

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Most of the veteran TEs have been swooped up (and Foster Moreau, who might've been their best option, had to step away from football), leaving the Bengals in a bit of a tough position. Irv Smith Jr. seems to be the best upside option left, but he's only played eight ineffective games the last two years after tearing his ACL before 2021. They were certainly going to take one swing at this deep draft class and now it may be two. I would also expect them to re-sign Drew Sample, their best blocking TE who missed last year after a Week 1 injury. They haven't brought in any outside backs either after losing Samaje Perine to Denver - it's looking more like Joe Mixon will still be here, but he'll have to take a pay cut. The second round has been their RB sweet spot the last decade with Gio Bernard, Jeremy Hill and Mixon all drafted there. I imagine you'll see a decent amount of smoke on UCLA's Zach Charbonnet (thoughts on him and the class in general, @SMU_Sox ?) in the late second.
Seahawks might be making Noah Fant available. Not sure what he'd cost in draft picks (probably a 6th?), but he's got 1 year left on his deal at $6.85 million if that fits in the cap.
 

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The thing with both Fant and Smith is that when you run a lot of outside zone you need your tight end to be able to take on defensive ends in the run game and neither guy really does that. They could maybe weakside block in 12 sets for outside zone but you don’t want to feature them on the strong side. Would be a blocking issue.
 

Rudy's Curve

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The thing with both Fant and Smith is that when you run a lot of outside zone you need your tight end to be able to take on defensive ends in the run game and neither guy really does that. They could maybe weakside block in 12 sets for outside zone but you don’t want to feature them on the strong side. Would be a blocking issue.
Given their switch to gap early last year and the signing of a mammoth tackle in Brown, it seems like that’s what they’ll run more of going forward. They’re just in a tough spot at TE - even if they hit in the draft, it’s tough to have a big rookie impact there.
 
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Rudy's Curve

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Seahawks might be making Noah Fant available. Not sure what he'd cost in draft picks (probably a 6th?), but he's got 1 year left on his deal at $6.85 million if that fits in the cap.
There might’ve been a match if they needed a LT as they’ve been shopping Jonah Williams - obviously the Seahawks are set there though. The Bengals are generally pretty loathe to trade picks for players but they’ve done a lot of things in the Burrow window they usually don’t, so maybe that’s a possibility.
 
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Rudy's Curve

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It looks like the Bengals are signing Sidney Jones to a one-year deal. This would likely mean the end of Eli Apple, as he may not have had interest coming off the bench behind Chidobe Awuzie (if healthy) and Cam Taylor-Britt. Jones was probably a first rounder in 2017 before tearing his Achilles at his pro day and has bounced around the last few years, but he's still only 26 and should be a solid depth piece or passable starter if Awuzie needs to be brought along slowly. I would expect them to add another CB in the draft, potentially even in the first round (they've taken five first-round corners the last 17 years) if the right player falls. @DanoooME - what did you think of Jones in Seattle?
 

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Irv Smith Jr. has agreed to a one-year deal. He was the last TE on the market with some potential receiving chops, as he averaged 12.2 YPC with five TDs on 43 catches in 2020 before a torn meniscus prior to 2021 ended his year and an ankle sprain hobbled him last year. He’s still only 24 as he was drafted at 20, so there’s some potential if he can stay healthy. They’ll definitely need to draft another TE and either re-sign Drew Sample or have Devin Asiasi fill the blocking role.
 
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DanoooME

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It looks like the Bengals are signing Sidney Jones to a one-year deal. This would likely mean the end of Eli Apple, as he may not have had interest coming off the bench behind Chidobe Awuzie (if healthy) and Cam Taylor-Britt. Jones was probably a first rounder in 2017 before tearing his Achilles at his pro day and has bounced around the last few years, but he's still only 26 and should be a solid depth piece or passable starter if Awuzie needs to be brought along slowly. I would expect them to add another CB in the draft, potentially even in the first round (they've taken five first-round corners the last 17 years) if the right player falls. @DanoooME - what did you think of Jones in Seattle?
He was okay, but he lost his spot to Michael Jackson (hee-hee), who will probably lose his spot to an incoming rookie or a miracle return of Tre Brown. He's filler at this point. He might do better in a different scheme in the secondary.
 

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Three of the guys I’m close to on football Twitter happen to be big Bengals fans so I get a lot of Bengals related content. Right now all three are clamoring for them to draft OL and an in-line tight end. Oh and a WR who will eventually replace Boyce. Seems reasonable. I think the Bengals will look at guys like Mayer, Washington, Schoonmaker, and Kraft.
 

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He was okay, but he lost his spot to Michael Jackson (hee-hee), who will probably lose his spot to an incoming rookie or a miracle return of Tre Brown. He's filler at this point. He might do better in a different scheme in the secondary.
Thanks. It seems they're taking a shot on pedigree/measurables ala Apple two years ago as DC Lou Anarumo has been coaching DBs for 30 years, and that worked out pretty well. His PFF grades (for whatever they're worth) have him much better in zone than man - that's predominantly what the Seahawks run, right?
 

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Three of the guys I’m close to on football Twitter happen to be big Bengals fans so I get a lot of Bengals related content. Right now all three are clamoring for them to draft OL and an in-line tight end. Oh and a WR who will eventually replace Boyce. Seems reasonable. I think the Bengals will look at guys like Mayer, Washington, Schoonmaker, and Kraft.
I think they're going to be switching to a lot more 12 next year with Boyd likely gone. I'm happy the Smith signing shouldn't pigeonhole them into a TE at 28, but Mayer definitely feels like their type there - local kid, big school, pretty safe prospect. It seems like there's going to be too much OL/DL/CB talent still on the board to pass up though. They'll need a RT for next year at the latest even if Jonah is on the team this year and that seems like the sweet spot for Wright/Harrison. I could definitely see them interested in Dawand Jones too given the move to gap, although I know you're not a fan there. It seems like it's a pretty shallow WR class after JSN/Addison/Flowers/Johnston - are there any slots you really like in the mid-late rounds?
 

DanoooME

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Thanks. It seems they're taking a shot on pedigree/measurables ala Apple two years ago as DC Lou Anarumo has been coaching DBs for 30 years, and that worked out pretty well. His PFF grades (for whatever they're worth) have him much better in zone than man - that's predominantly what the Seahawks run, right?
They ran a lot of 2 deep zone in 2021 when the secondary pretty much blew chunks, but they went back to more Cover-3 last year with Tariq Woolen stepping up. If the Bengals run more zone, I think he'll fit much better. Jones was better in 2021 with more zone.
 

luckiestman

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Every time I see this thread I think to myself, man, it must be nice to have Joe Burrow. It must be so relaxing. Like how a billionaire knows “well, I’ve got the money thing conquered”
 

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They ran a lot of 2 deep zone in 2021 when the secondary pretty much blew chunks, but they went back to more Cover-3 last year with Tariq Woolen stepping up. If the Bengals run more zone, I think he'll fit much better. Jones was better in 2021 with more zone.
Appreciate the insight - the Bengals have some varied looks, but I'd say they play mostly zone. If they salvaged Apple's career, I think they can make something work with Jones.
 

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Every time I see this thread I think to myself, man, it must be nice to have Joe Burrow. It must be so relaxing. Like how a billionaire knows “well, I’ve got the money thing conquered”
There needs to be a 30 for 30 on the Bengals-Dolphins Burrow Bowl in Week 16 of 2019. The Dolphins had a 23-point lead midway through the fourth and still led by 16 with under a minute left before the Bengals improbably forced overtime. The Bengals had the ball twice in overtime too and thank god they didn't score. For a franchise that's known pretty much nothing but heartbreak, a win there might've been the worst loss of them all. After The Lost Decade, the promise of Palmer's career evaporating and Dalton holding back really good teams, this is quite the welcome development.
 

luckiestman

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There needs to be a 30 for 30 on the Bengals-Dolphins Burrow Bowl in Week 16 of 2019. The Dolphins had a 23-point lead midway through the fourth and still led by 16 with under a minute left before the Bengals improbably forced overtime. The Bengals had the ball twice in overtime too and thank god they didn't score. For a franchise that's known pretty much nothing but heartbreak, a win there might've been the worst loss of them all. After The Lost Decade, the promise of Palmer's career evaporating and Dalton holding back really good teams, this is quite the welcome development.
I have a good friend who grew up in Dayton and I’m happy for him. I’m not a bandwagon jumper type but if I was I would be on this wagon. That’s a good idea about the 30 for 30.
 

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I have a good friend who grew up in Dayton and I’m happy for him. I’m not a bandwagon jumper type but if I was I would be on this wagon. That’s a good idea about the 30 for 30.
I had to be at a family event that day and follow on my phone. I just could not believe what happened - coming back from 16 down in 29 seconds is one in a million, so of course the Bengals would do it in a game they absolutely had to lose.

I can see how the bandwagon is filling up - obviously they've been successful and they're just a fun bunch to root for. They've thrived off slights the last two years, so it'll be interesting to see how they respond when expectations are really high (they're tied for the highest win total with the Chiefs and Niners) but I think they have the talent and makeup for it. Obviously Burrow will ensure they're contenders as long as he's there, but this is the last year all the key pieces on the staff will be together and there are a lot of important guys (Reader, Wilson, Awuzie, Williams if he's not traded, Higgins, Boyd) set to hit free agency at the moment.
 
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SMU_Sox

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Jul 20, 2009
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@Rudy's Curve yes: Nathaniel Dell, Michael Wilson (if not for injuries he’d be a slam dunk), Rakim Jarrett, Charlie Jones, Xavier Hutchinson (he’s also a nice fit for you all).

AT Perry can play in the slot some and he fits. I know Kayshon Boutte has had a rough draft process but he’s also a nice slot.

If you’re looking for vertical guys as flankers or slots it’s Jayden Reed or Marvin Mims. I could see either one fitting in well.

It’s more of a pick your flavor.
 

Rudy's Curve

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Mixon has been recharged with aggravated menacing from the incident in late January. Given his ongoing issues (there was also an incident in March at his house where he was not present and his sister's boyfriend fired 11 shots at a teenager playing Nerf wars), declining production, big cap hit and deep RB class, it's really hard to see him being on the team for long after the draft. It's a shame it had to end this way as he was a model citizen for six years, but it's time to move on.
 

SMU_Sox

queer eye for the next pats guy
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Hey @Rudy's Curve - I’m doing a 7 round mock draft where a bunch of us all have a team of two. We do it every year. This year I got the Bengals. Any thoughts on positions or players you want?
 

Rudy's Curve

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Hey @Rudy's Curve - I’m doing a 7 round mock draft where a bunch of us all have a team of two. We do it every year. This year I got the Bengals. Any thoughts on positions or players you want?
If I have any area of expertise, the draft certainly isn't it. Kancey or Robinson seem like the pipe dreams at 28. They'll definitely take at least one TE - Mayer is probably the favorite if he's there. Wright and Dawand Jones (only because they run so much gap, I know you're not a fan) for tackles, and maybe Freeland in the second. They'll also take a RB for sure - Abanikanda has a really interesting all-around profile (age, measurables, production) but it seems like he could be gone as early as the second. It seems like Spears would be a really nice fit too. Saldiveri seems like everyone's Day 3 iOL guy. I'd say it's pretty close to a lock they take a corner too but where depends on the board and Awuzie's health. Can't rule out a punter either - I would imagine they lean towards Baringer since he's kicked in AFC North weather.
 

Rudy's Curve

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@SMU_Sox - thoughts on Murphy? Bengals Twitter was a little disappointed as it seems they generally would've preferred Nolan Smith. Murphy has a pretty good combo of age and athleticism, just not the production of high-end edge guys. One of the guys comped him to Carl Lawson (who was a pressure machine), which would be great if he can finish.
 

SMU_Sox

queer eye for the next pats guy
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The guys I know on Bengals Twitter like Max Toscano not only called the pick but loved it. Murphy was a top 15-17 player on my board and is a fantastic fit. I loved the pick.
 

SMU_Sox

queer eye for the next pats guy
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2009
9,020
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Really Bengals Twitter didn’t like it? Man why the hell not lol? What isn’t to like about Murphy in the late 20s?! That’s crazy to me.