With Andrew Whitworth and Tanner Hawkinson rehabilitating their respective injuries (or rebuilding strength in Whitworth's case), Anthony Collins has taken a major of the snaps at left tackle. He was the primary left tackle against the Falcons and participated in over 50 percent of the team's snaps.
Collins has done well enough to warrant praise from the coaching staff.
"It's the best he's looked since he's been here," offensive line coach Paul Alexander said to Bengals.com. "A.C. has been terrific. He's sharp, he's polished, he's taking a million snaps and he hasn't complained once."
Lewis added to Alexander's praise.
"Anthony's been here a long time and matured into a guy that you can really rely on," Lewis also said to Bengals.com. "He's done great. Whenever he goes into a game he's done a nice job. In Andre's absence during the offseason he's done a great job of working and being in there and with Andrew's absence … that's why he was signed to bring back here (in 2012) because he's a valuable player on our team."
Collins has played 44 games since joining the Bengals in 2008, starting 18. When Levi Jones was suffering an assortment of injuries, it was supposed to be Whitworth that slid from guard as the team's left tackle in 2008. Unfortunately, Whitworth suffered his own season-ending injury, forcing Collins into the starting lineup -- which he did, and did it well.
Collins is entering the final year after signing a two-year contract last offseason.