Welcome to the second round of our experimental Bengals Round Table. Earlier this afternoon we talked about Rey Maualuga becoming a defensive leader, the general state of the team's linebacker and safety position. This time we look into a more specific question, wondering where Andre Caldwell fits into this offense. Of course you can add to our discussions in the comments. Consider it something like an open thread, with us providing introductory information to start. All of the questions were asked by Jason Garrison, though we're going to be putting out a call for questions on Twitter in the future. Now on with part III of our Bengals Round table for the day.
The team has an extremely talented and young group of receivers. We obviously know where A.J. Green, Jerome Simpson, Jordan Shipley and Jermaine Gresham fit. Where do you guys see Andre Caldwell? Do you think there's a chance that guys like Ryan Whalen pass him up or do you think Caldwell will find a spot on the team?
Naji Bsisu: I actually think that Caldwell could surprise us this year. He has said he is in the best shape of his life and for the first time, he's not under Chad's shadow. He has also looked good from what I've seen in the training camp videos.
Josh Kirkendall: People tend to forget that when Jerome Simpson was breaking out in the last three games last year, that Andre Caldwell only came seven yards short of Simpson's yardage total over those three games. And both Simpson and Caldwell posted roughly the same yard/reception average. Very easily I see Caldwell backing up Simpson and A.J. Green at both wide-out positions. Whalen, a special teams guy too, could be your backup slot receiver too.
Naji: All in all, I think receiver is our deepest position.
Josh: Talent is through the roof. But inexperience could be a liability for a rookie quarterback like Andy Dalton.
Naji: There will be growing pains for sure, but you can't help but feel excited about the potential.
Jason Garrison: Very true, but if the receivers and Dalton grow together, this offense could explode in the next couple years
Josh: The question is, will people have patience to let them grow. In the NFL of today, you have to immediately produce. If the Bengals only have two wins through the first ten games, that patience will be truly tested.
Jason: I think that Bengals fans know that the team is starting over and that the players are going to need time to adjust. I think for every fan that writes them off, there will be more that understand
Naji: Due to all the losing we've experienced, I actually think Bengals fans are some of the most patient fans around. I think if they're competitive and exciting to watch, they'll be okay with some losses this year.
Josh: What will the rookies think when those same fans are staying at home while Paul Brown Stadium has a ton of open seats?
Jason: They'll think they need to get better to put butts in those seats
Naji: It goes two ways, either they'll be thinking we just need to win and they'll come back. Or, they'll be planning on running as soon as they hit free-agency.
Josh: Like most of our top free agents?
Naji: Unfortunately, yes.
Jason: Now I'm depressed
Josh: That's not very patient Jason.
Naji: This is the life of a Bengals fan, maintaining optimism in the most depressing of situations.