Good morning Bengals Nation! It's Wednesday which means we're officially halfway through this week. It's nothing but smooth sailing from here on out, hopefully. Let's try to be optimistic even in the worse of situations. Now matter how run down things are just remember that it could always be worse. Much, much worse.
Alright so not going to rehash that the Bengals season is over. We know that. So now it's time to look towards the future of the Bengals. They have a number of free agents that will need to be decided upon as to whether or not their careers will continue in Cincinnati. And they also have a number of holes that they need to address whether it's via free agency, trade, or the draft.
I'm going to talk about the draft because I would rather not speculate on any potential free agents for the time being. But one thing I will say is that I don't want to see Peyton Hillis as a Bengal next season. I've noticed that there are quite a few within Bengals Nation that are clamoring for Cincinnati to sign him. Personally, I'm not sold on him. Do I think he's a one year wonder? No. But I don't think he's nearly as good as everyone is hyping him up to be. He's too injury prone for my liking as well. I blame Madden for that one. The curse lives on!
As far as the draft goes I think the Bengals have a number of directions that they could go. The Bengals have two selections in the first round alone and with those two picks they can fill some major voids on either side of the ball. I would like to see the Bengals either address cornerback, safety, guard, or maybe even linebacker in the first round. A question though is what if Alabama running back Trent Richardson is available at # 17 or # 21, do the Bengals take him? Yes they do need a running back especially if they don't resign Cedric Benson. I think it's time to close the book on the Benson era. He had a decent run, but he frustration with the offensive play calling seems to be adding up. I'm sure he can land a two-year deal somewhere that's not Cincinnati.
Once Leon Hall landed on IR the Bengals lack of depth at cornerback proved to be costly. The Bengals need to address the secondary in some fashion. Maybe go with someone like safety Mark Barron from Alabama or cornerback Alfonzo Dennard of Nebraska. Either one would be a respectable addition to the defense. Either way the Bengals must upgrade the secondary as it proved to be the nail in the coffin for them against the Houston Texans.
Between today and the draft the stock for every player on the board will either increase or decrease. It will be interesting to see who rises to the occasion and improves their position in the draft. Hopefully the Bengals will make solid selections that will address many of their holes.
Alright here is what you may have missed or overlooked from Tuesday.
- Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer has interviewed for the Miami Dolphins head coaching vacancy. He appears to be at the "top of the list." I have a feeling that we have seen the last of Zimmer in Cincinnati.
- Cincy Jungle's Unsung Hero of the Week goes to.......
- Jay Gruden will be staying in Cincinnati. He has stated that he will not interview for any head coaching vacancies.
- Now that the Bengals are out of the playoffs what's left for us to talk about? How about the Bengals needs for the 2012 draft?
- Hue Jackson, who was one of the architects for the Carson Palmer trade, has been fired by the Oakland Raiders.
- If Mike Zimmer does in fact leave the Bengals for a head coaching gig there's some speculation that the Bengals could turn to former Jacksonville Jaguar head coach Jack Del Rio to be his replacement. However, he might not be available if Zimmer leaves.
- A look back at some Bengals history on January 10th. Twenty years ago yesterday the Bengals defeated the San Diego Chargers in what was known as the Freezer Bowl.
- Wide receiver Jordan Shipley appears to be on track to be ready for Training Camp. That's great news because the Bengals missed his production this season.
- Here is an in-depth look at Jay Gruden's comments regarding Cedric Benson.