DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 18: Wide receiver A.J. Green #18 of the Cincinnati Bengals makes a catch for a touchdown as Cornerback Andre' Goodman #21 of the Denver Broncos defends during the fourth quarter at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 18, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
It appears as if Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis is feeling fairly comfortable having A.J. Green becoming a leader on this team, recently raving about Green's ability to take over a game.
"It's his offensive football team and he has come back with that attitude," Lewis said. "It's a no-nonsense attitude and you could tell he's in incredible condition."
Lewis believes that Green is mature beyond his years and is ready to raise his game and leadership to another level:
"A.J. has grown immensely in his stature. It's fun to hear him talk and communicate now. I don't know, we may have a pretty veteran player even though he is in his second year as far as experience and leadership.There's never a line he's not first in. No one goes before him in anything. He accepts his role as being one of the best players on this team and he takes it seriously. We may not need another guy."
Of course Lewis is not insinuating that the Bengals do not need anyone else to throw the ball to, but he seems to realize that they do not have a need for another big name receiver. This could refer to the rumors that the team is looking into signing veteran free agent Braylon Edwards. While Lewis does not appear to be looking for a veteran No. 2, he believes that a veteran would not trouble Green at all:
"No one affects A.J. just like no one affects a Ray Lewis," Lewis said. "A.J. has those kinds of qualities that are pretty special. That's what I'm observing. He's a guy that is always going to be ahead of the pack no matter who you put ahead of the pack. Without being obnoxious or standoffish. "
It sounds like Lewis is ready to go into the season with one elite receiver and a couple of unproven youngsters. While he is not ruling out signing a proven veteran, Lewis appears to be content with Green being the veteran leader of the receiving group.