NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 06: Andy Dalton #14 of the Cincinnati Bengals looks to pass the ball during the NFL game against the Tennessee Titans at LP Field on November 6, 2011 in Nashville, Tennessee. The Bengals won 24-17. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
One thing that second year quarterback Andy Dalton is not worried about is his young wide receivers. Dalton and receiver A.J. Green came into the league together last year as rookies and played well, so Dalton expects his other young receivers to perform:
"I think we both had the same mindset," Dalton said about he and Green. "We may be rookies, but we're going to be playing, so we better play well. I think what we were able to do last year shows these rookies (and young veterans), 'I don't have to wait for my turn. I can go ahead and do this now."
Dalton is right about the young receivers. They know that they are going to play, so why not play well? Those young receivers looking to make their mark this training camp include Armon Binns, Andrew Hawkins, Vidal Hazelton, Justin Hilton, Marvin Jones, Kashif Moore, Taveon Rogers, Mohamed Sanu, Brandon Tate, and Ryan Whalen. At this point it appears that Binns and Tate lead the race for the number two receiver spot next to Green. Dalton is excited to see how the competition plays out:
"It's nice to see the competition," Dalton said. "You look at the tape and see Brandon Tate making plays, Armon Binns making plays, see Sanu making plays. And A.J. Everybody knows what A.J. can do, but there are guys people don't know about. "Hawk making plays. Ryan Whalen when he's out there, he's always doing the right things. We've got a lot of competition. I'm excited to see what everybody does in camp. This is where they make their mark."
Dalton and his receivers have been separated over the last six weeks, so Dalton has been working with the TCU quarterbacks and wide receivers. He does not expect it to take long before he and his receivers get back into sync again:
"It didn't take us very long to get together a few months ago after not throwing all winter, if at all," Dalton said. "There's not the confusion of how are we going to handle this, or how are we going to to handle that. What are you going to say when we get to this? We don't have to worry about that anymore. Everybody's got a good understanding."
Knowing the playbook is a good start, now it is time to see how the players execute during the upcoming training camp. Dalton getting comfortable with the young receivers is one of the keys to training camp. This will reduce the possibility of Dalton forcing the ball to Green.