How the Draft & Free Agency will impact the Bengals for the 2013 season...

#1 The Offensive Line stays intact for another season.

PFF favorite, Andre Smith is back at RT, while all-rookie Zeitler is in place at RG, giving the Bengals a great side to run.

LT is still held by a good Whitworth, and backed up by a competent A Collins.

LG becomes a battle of 2 solid candidates in quality starter Wharton & improving youngster Boling.

Center becomes a battle between incumbent Kyle Cook and fan favorite (at least on CJ) Trevor Robinson.

Several late picks were made on the line, but none of them are likely to challenge this season for starting duties.

#2 The Passing Game is opened up:

AJ Green is still on the roster as our stud top WR.

Sanu should be returning healthy as our good 2nd WR, who recorded 4 TD's in a 3-game span before injuries.

The Bengals only averaged 16 yards per game in receiving yards from the backfield. Giovani Bernard can double that by himself.

Talented Cobi Hamilton & Marvin Jones will get to duke it out for a role a the backup receiver

Tyler Eifert (6'6" 250 lbs) & Jermaine Gresham (6'5" 260 lbs) offer a dangerous TE tandem and pose matchup problems for the smaller safeties. A good pair of pass catching TE's that offer big targets for Dalton.

The addition of Eifert & health of Sanu provides Dalton a pair of very sure handed pass catchers to add to the uncoverable Green, talented Gresham, and new backfield threat Gio.

#3 The Running game is made more explosive:

BJGE's lack of explosion, coupled with the coaches unwillingness to get the ball to anybody else led to a rushing game that was only as good as the holes the O-Line could create. With the O-Line losing a starting LG and Center as the season began, this was not an effective situation.

A now healthy O-Line, plus the addition of 2013's top rookie RB Giovani Bernard should remedy that.

Gio is a very elusive, shifty RB with a low center of gravity and good speed, and a home run threat each time he touches the ball.

#4 Linebackers are slightly improved

OK, Maualuga is still there at MIKE, so not 'greatly' improved. But improved nonetheless.

SAM is improved. Gone is Manny Lawson and his 2 sacks and 38 tackles. Added is James Harrison with his 6 sacks and 70 tackles (despite playing fewer games that Lawson). Also added is a tough, physical presence that Harrison brings - especially for 2 games vs the Steelers this season. If Moch is finally ready to play, adding him to the position battle for the backup role helps the position too.

Sean Porter offers a nice battle with Lamur for the weakside spot that could ultimately allow the Bengals to slide Burfict to the middle. Hooray!

#5 Secondary finally has a Safety. Somewhat.

There is no guarantee that a 3rd round pick can become a starter. But seeing how the safety spot was so weak last year that they had to bring in Crocker off the street - it's an upgrade.

Clements, Mays, Miles and Crocker were stopgaps at the SS spot. Shawn Williams is a good in the box tackler that could potentially bring some stability to the safety position. While not Cyprien, nor an elite pass defender, he is an upgrade to what we saw last year.

#6 Secondary adds new, young corners into the position battle

Dre Kirkpatrick and Brandon Ghee have never really played yet, so they are more or less, roster additions. Dre is a mid 1st round pick with ability to cover and tackle with aggression. Adding them to a veteran, but aging cast of Hall, Jones & Newman is an upgrade to last year when we had no Dre or Ghee vying for a spot.

#7 D-Line doesn't rebuild - it just reloads

The defense is coming off a top-10 finish, that actually saw itself as a top 3 defense in the second half of the season. And much of that was due to the Bengals' D-Line. The D-Line sees all the major players return yet again (MJ, Dunlap, Geno, Geathers, Gilberry, Peko)

Gone is big run-stuffer Pat Sims. But added to the mix is 2nd round pick Devon Still, 3rd round pick Brandon Thompson, and the man who intimidates the Incredible Hulk, Margus Hunt.

#8 The team will need Dalton to stay healthy

Some teams grab an experienced veteran who has had some success at the QB position to backup their starter. The Bengals took the opposite approach, adding 2 younger project QB's who are proficient at tossing the INT, and not exactly going to win you any games in a pinch.

In all, the team looks to be in a better position this year than they were last year. This is a good thing, considering they were a playoff team last year.

With Pittsburgh losing their top RB and WR, and Baltimore losing key players, and Cleveland, well, being Cleveland, this year is shaping up to be one in which the Bengals can make some noise. Who dey?

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Cincy Jungle's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Cincy Jungle's writers or editors.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

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.