Alright, first of all I just want to say that our Cincinnati Bengals have a very bright future ahead of them if they continue this character cleansing and maturation of our young talent. Think about it, what other teams can say that they have four, count em 4, sophomore or rookie pro-bowlers. That in itself is a feat. Also, with our two first round picks we can continue to add more pieces to this young team (shout out to the Jokeland front office for making that happen). The way I see it, we could be the NFL version of the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Hit the jump to see my reasons for this comparison and my offseason plan.
Think about it, both of these teams are young, hungry, unproven, and play in small market cities. They both have been drafting geniuses recently and it all started with their top pick stud (Kevin Durant/AJ Green). Then they added complementary pieces (Westbrook, Harden, Ibaka/Dalton, Gresham, Shipley, Simpson) through the draft. Hopefully the day will come where we will be fighting for the top AFC spot, just like the Thunder are fighting for the top spot in the Western conference.
Anyways, enough with my basketball talk. Time to get to the offseason plan.
The most important things for any successful football team are the two lines. I feel like our D-line is set (does not mean I am opposed to Wolfe) but our O-line is absolutely awful. It's like they're playing Red Rover out there instead of protecting Dalton. The stats lie, we gave up I think the 4th fewest sacks, but that is more a testament to Dalton's pocket awareness and scrambling ability then actual pass protection. And our run game was beyond awful, thanks to this awful line and a running back whose name will never again be stated on the blog. My proposed idea is drafting Konz with the 17th pick and resigning Bobbie Williams to play for a year and groom Konz. He could potentially be playing Center or Guard if either go down with injury. Then we sign a stud Guard, a la Grubbs, Nicks, or Mathis, to protect the other side with Whit. Our line could potentially look like this: Whit/FA signing/Cook/Williams/Smith. That seems like a good to potentially great line that would help our run and pass game and get Living the hell away from the 'Nati.
Honestly, when healthy, I believe we have a decent secondary. When you have a dynamic player like Pacman as your nickel corner, you can be pretty good. Needless to say, with Nelson hopefully being resigned, we just need to draft another CB to play behind Clements for a year and understand the position to the fullest. Maybe we could even slide Clements over to SS and have our rookie corner play as the number #2. This also fills the hole left by Crocker, assuming Sands or Mays cannot fill that hole. That being said, I would not draft a corner in the first unless it was Kirkpatric, Jenkins is a maybe. I feel like going for a corner there is too much of a reach. We can easily get a decent corner in the second without reaching. And Jenkins character issues are not much of a concern, I have faith that Zimmer will keep him under control. Plus, with Crocker gone, what's there to be so mad about?
I am honestly not that familiar with many running backs outside of Pead, Richardson, Miller, and Wilson. But hopefully we could either execute some kind of trade to trade up and grad Miller/Wilson early second round or steal Michael Bush away from the Raiders. Hopefully with our improved O-line, it won't matter who the back is.
I think were set at receiver/tight end. The only move I would make is if Simpson's legal trials go south, then we need to pick up a speedy FA. I'm thinking Desean Jackson, who I think is just in his anger, or a guy like Meachem/Garcon. And keep Scaife/Cochart if Lee decides to move on.
I feel like we are set at the other positions, a veteran backup QB would be nice to mentor Dalton though, maybe a Kerry Collins or Jeff Garcia kind of guy to show Dalton the ins and outs of a sophomore slump.
Anyways, comment and share your thoughts. This is my first true FanPost and I would love to know how I did.
WHO DEY, ALL DEY!!