File From The Crystal Ball III: Bengals Have Two Of The Best Young Pass Rushers

SEATTLE - OCTOBER 30: Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson #7 of the Seattle Seahawks is sacked by Carlos Dunlap #96 of the Cincinnati Bengals at CenturyLink Field on October 30, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. The Bengals defeated the Seahawks 34-12. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Matt Williamson, current scout for ESPN and former NFL and college scout for the Cleveland Browns, tends to establish a fan's alternating perspective. Five months before writing that Andy Dalton's arm strength wasn't impressive, he shredded Carson Palmer's technique by saying "he pretty much failed every test." So there's this kind of love/hate relationship with the former scout from Bengals fans.

However the intriguing series of how he views the makeup of the league's superstars three years from now is enticing. A.J. Green, he views will be one of top-two receivers in the NFL by 2015. Jermaine Gresham will be one of the league's better tight ends as well.

So how does he view the league's pass rushers in 2015?

Let's start by saying, and thus ditching the element of surprise because we're fairly certain you've guessed correctly, there are two Bengals on this list (In$ider). Both of whom are incredibly young and will be due a contract extension sooner rather than later.

Williamson starts the praising of Cincinnati with defensive end Carlos Dunlap at No. 7 writing:

It might surprise people that Dunlap is this high on the list, but he is only 23 and his tape shows a much better pass-rusher than his stats would indicate. He needs to play a full season and has only 14 career sacks -- he dropped to 4.5 sacks after 9.5 his rookie season -- but the sacks will come in bunches for Dunlap, who is still a puppy in terms of his development. Dunlap is a bigger edge-rusher than most of the guys on this list, but that doesn't compromise his agility or closing burst.

And when you have a list of pass rushers, you can't forget about perhaps the best one at defensive tackle, Geno Atkins -- the only tackle on Williamson's top-15.

The 24-year-old Atkins is one of the top interior pass-rushers in the league today. I give him extra points on this list for being a defensive tackle rather than a pure edge player like the others. He isn't built to withstand an immense pounding, and the Bengals would be wise to keep him as a part of a rotation, but Atkins just explodes off the snap and instantly is in the backfield. He has the ability to abuse heavier interior offensive linemen.

So in this case, Williamson falls on the "love" side of the spectrum.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Cincy Jungle

You must be a member of Cincy Jungle to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Cincy Jungle. You should read them.

Join Cincy Jungle

You must be a member of Cincy Jungle to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Cincy Jungle. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.