The future for the Cincinnati Bengals is a mug filled of Hu Dey Beer, guzzling like a Middle-Earth dwarf drinking through rose-colored glasses.
Last week NFL draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. composed his 2012 All-Rookie team, which included offensive guard Kevin Zeitler, center Trevor Robinson and linebacker Vontaze Burfict. A tremendous cast of players developing into Cincinnati's foundation with those rose-colored glasses witnesses veterans winning multiple playoff games.
This week Kiper offers a list of second-year breakout players (In$ider). Wide receiver Marvin Jones was the only one that made the list:
He caught five passes in each of his last two regular-season games and could play a bigger role in 2013. Jones doesn't do anything in spectacular fashion, but he has great ball skills and should compete with Mohamed Sanu to be the No. 2 WR across from A.J. Green.
Before fellow rookie Mohamed Sanu went on a rampage midway through the season, scoring four touchdowns in three games, it was Jones that was expected to receive a significant jump in playing time before suffering a knee injury early during Cincinnati's Week Seven loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Personally, this is something we're looking forward to next season. Not for any perceived competition, rather the contributions both will make going forward. And we can't scratch the thought from our minds that when Mohamed Sanu was a regular, Cincinnati's offense began producing significantly.