Bengals Player Power Rankings: Week One

Joe Robbins - Getty Images

Ranking the top Cincinnati Bengals players entering the regular season opener against the Baltimore Ravens.

Cincy Jungle's original Top 20 Bengals Players of 2012 list has evolved into weekly power rankings. As preseason evaluations and injuries shaped the Bengals roster, it has also changed our player rankings. With Kyle Cook and Travelle Wharton falling off our top 20, two young players enter and will be asked to play a reliable role in 2012.

RANK PLAYER

L. WEEK

CHANGE

NOTES

1 A.J. Green

(1)

--

Green was targeted early and often this preseason. The offense flows through him.

2 Geno Atkins

(2)

--

Atkins is entering his prime in 2012. We should expect a career year.

3 Andrew Whitworth

(3)

--

Whitworth's arrow is close to pointing down after a bad second half last season, which seemingly carried over into the preseason.

4 Andy Dalton

(4)

--

Dalton wasn't accurate this preseason but the offense is without a running game while breaking in three new lineman.

5 Thomas Howard

(5)

--

Howard looks to be more involved in Zimmer's game plan. He's their best linebacker and it isn't close.

6 Reggie Nelson

(6)

--

Nelson looks exactly the same as 2011; Great. He's tackling well and hitting hard; mid-season form.

7 Leon Hall

(10)

+3

Hall is playing and that's more than expected. Predictably he had a roller coaster preseason as he knocked off rust from an Achilles.

8 Jermaine Gresham

(8)

--

The Good: Gresham's two preseason catches were for 19 & 25 yards. The Bad: He got injured again. They need him healthy.

9 Andre Smith

(11)

+2

Smith has added to his run blocking this offseason. Add that to his good pass protection and Smith could be the team's best lineman in 2012.

10 Mike Nugent

(9)

-1

Nugent was his normal self, as reliable as it gets. But he was knocked back somewhat due to the resurgence from Smith and Hall.

11 Carlos Dunlap

(7)

-4

Dunlap got injured on the second preseason series. Can he stay healthy?

12 Domata Peko

(13)

+1

Peko is his normal, solid self. Nothing special, but reliable.

13 Benjarvus Green-Ellis

(12)

-1

BJGE looked solid during the preseason opener, and then missed the next three games.

14 Manny Lawson

(15)

-1

Lawson showed more pass rush in four preseason games than all of 2011.

15 Rey Maualuga

(14)

-1

Maualuga's arrow is down because his backups were quite impression while he was out with an injury.

16 Nate Clements

(18)

+2

Clements' ability and willingness to play safety in nickel packages has dramatically increased his value.

17 Michael Johnson

(17)

--

With injuries to other DEs, Johnson has been the only reliable player. Still, not spectacular.

18 Clint Boling

NR

Boling's arrow is way up after stepping up for Wharton. They need him to keep up what he showed in preseason.

19 Bernard Scott

(19)

--

Scott's arrow is pointing down after missing the entire preseason and more than likely week one.

20 Andrew Hawkins

NR

Hawkins is the starting slot WR. Shipley was released and Baby Hawk takes over.

Recently Dropped: Kyle Cook, Travelle Wharton
On The Rise: Armon Binns, Jeff Faine, Terrence Newman, Taylor Mays, and Brandon Tate

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