INDIANAPOLIS - NOVEMBER 14: Jermaine Gresham #84 of the Cincinnati Bengals catches a pass for a touchdown during the Bengals 23-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts in the NFL game at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 14 2010 in Indianapolis Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Matt Williamson is offering a unique perspective, gently placing his future-goggles into a position-by-position ranking three years from now. You've already experienced one position ranking, listing wide receiver A.J. Green as the second-best wide receiver in 2015, behind Calvin Johnson -- which is so vogue (Green will be better by then, easily).
Williamson resumes his Crystal Ball preview at tight end listing players like New England's Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez, Washington's Fred Davis, New Orleans' Jimmy Graham, Green Bay's Jermichael Finley and Minnesota's Kyle Rudolph. If you look further down the list, eventually you'll find Bengals tight end Jermaine Gresham ranked No. 7 standing next to a fading Marty McFly.
Gresham will only be 24 years old when the 2012 season begins. The best is in front of Gresham, and I expect a breakout season this year. In fact, behind A.J. Green, I expect Gresham to be the second targeted receiver in Cincinnati's passing attack. Andy Dalton is not a big-armed passer and struggles to drive the ball deep downfield, but Dalton can be very effective inside the numbers, which again favors Gresham to see a lot of action going forward. The Bengals, now, need to get Gresham more involved downfield.
Couldn't agree more. Not the "strong armed" reference of Andy Dalton (again with the vogue statements), rather getting Jermaine Gresham more involved in the vertical game. However as one can often conclude on their own, it's never been an issue of talent with Gresham. In early January this year, Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden believes that Gresham was a little slow adapting to the team's offensive playbook because he's not accustomed to what's being asked of him.
"He's just got to continue studying, learn and rep, rep, rep, rep and rep. He's just got to mentally get into it and see the looks. He's very raw. He's never done this type of thing before where option routes, reading the safeties, two deep, three deep or whatever it might be. The more he sees the better he's going to be and once he gets it, he will be a dominate force."
We can't say that it's entirely Gresham's fault. There was no offseason last year for players to be coached a spanking new playbook with foreign terminology installed by a new offensive coordinator at the time. But we completely agree with Gruden, he will be a dominant force. And we're siding with Williamson that we should see his breakout season this year.