We have had as many posts about fullbacks on Tuesday as we have had all of last season. So that just means we need to update our Tight End position file for the 20th time since August. Here's the quick background version. Reggie Kelly and Ben Utecht injured for season, Daniel Coats becomes starter, J.P. Foschi signed off the street. Coats disappoints and Foschi becomes the team's first team Tight End.
And of course, there's Chase Coffman.
Like the team's fullbacks, Coffman was a major storyline on Hard Knocks. And it wasn't very endearing. In fact, it was down right embarrassing for the rookie. Even though he made the 53-man roster, Coffman has yet to make his NFL debut; largely because he's still developing his blocking skills -- something that Coffman rarely did as a tight end with Missouri.
Dayton Daily News' (yes, they have a Bengals story) Carlos Holmes writes that Coffman's "long awaited pro debut could be on the horizon." Holmes believes that the Bengals could insert Coffman sooner rather than later because the position hasn't been very productive.
Coffman has used his time wisely working on becoming a better all-around player. The tight end hits the weight room religiously each day and continues to study hard in an effort to improve his overall game. The one area he is working the hardest to improve is his blocking skills.
Coffman struggled with blocking assignments throughout training camp and the learning experience has been humbling.
“I knew it was going to be tough,” he said. “I think it kind of surprised me because it’s not as easy as one may think. There’s nothing easy about playing at this level. There is a lot of technique involved along with everything else.”
Several weeks ago, Marvin Lewis said "I’ve got to make sure those guys who suit up on Sunday can fulfill covering those kicks and doing all those things Chase didn’t do a whole lot of at the University of Missouri." What Lewis, who likes Coffman's progress, is pointing out is that he still needs to work on things he didn't do with Missouri -- like everything other than running, catching, breathing and watching South Park reruns.
So we find it hard to believe Holmes is speaking with any authority; merely pointing out speculation based on disappointing play of the team's tight ends.
Once he gets his blocking technique down, there's still high hopes for Coffman, who could add a frighteningly new dimension to a Bengals passing offense that's only ranked 18th in the league.