CINCINNATI, OH - MAY 12: Orson Charles #80 of the Cincinnati Bengals works out during a rookie minicamp at Paul Brown Stadium on May 12, 2012 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
According to Paul Dehner Jr., it will be a while before fourth round pick Orson Charles is ready to line up detached from the line. Pro Bowler Jermaine Gresham often did this last year and it created quite a few mismatches during the season.With Charles' ability to work the field much like a bigger wide receiver, many thought that we would see him outside in many offensive formations.
Though this may not be the case right away, it is still early and Charles will need more reps and more time to learn the playbook before he is split out. Many seem to view Charles as an in line tight end, someone that can be on the field at the same time as Gresham.
Offensive coordinator Jay Gruden wants Charles to learn the finer points of being a tight end before anything else happens:
"He's obviously a very athletic guy, but it's going to take some time for him," Gruden said. "He's got to get his standard tight end stuff down first."
Jermaine Gresham and Orson Charles certainly have the ability to be in the same ballpark as Patriot tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez. Of course it will be difficult to match that combined production, but Gresham and Charles could potentially become a lethal combination--especially when on the field at the same time. It appears that Charles has some things to work on before he sees significant playing time, but the talent is definitely there.
Our own Anthony Cosenza recently wrote about why he thinks that Charles will be the Bengals' rookie of the year in 2012. He feels that Charles will contribute heavily in the red zone, and that's an area that the offense certainly needs help with. They finished 25th in touchdown percentage in the red zone last season, and are hoping to improve greatly off of that statistic.