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I wonder... about Sunday and Bengals running backs

Having some wondering moments? Me too.

I wonder...

...what we should expect against the Dolphins.

I hate to sound confident -- they've burnt my expectations like a wild fire -- but there's no reason that the Bengals can't pull this out. At first, when the Dolphins were making a run at being the most defeated NFL team of all-time, I wasn't just scared of losing -- I was petrified. Like most of you, I didn't want another chapter of Bengals futility to remind us that our struggles are far from being distant.

Then again, the Bengals have played down to their competition all season. They lost to the 5-10 49ers -- who are currently riding a two-game winning streak winning three of their past five. They lost to the 7-8 Cardinals -- who are decent, but lost after the Bengals did a poor job protecting the football. The Bengals also lost to the 4-11 Chiefs, barely beat the 3-12 Jets and were smoked by the 7-8 Bills. These are teams that all of us expected the Bengals to win.

...will Kenny Irons be ready next season?

In a piece by Mark Curnutte, Irons feels like he's on target of "being medically cleared in time to participate in training camp next July."

...then what?

With the season Kenny Watson is having, it's hard to simply say to him, thanks, but you're going back to your old role. Most expect Rudi Johnson to be playing his final game of the season Sunday -- if he indeed plays. And sadly, you have to always have someone on the roster or practice squad to replace the oft-injured Chris Perry. So if Irons comes back, and he plays, what should we expect?

I think Watson has provided enough to be given a shot as the team's feature back. If Rudi Johnson leaves, that will give a three-man competition for the team's feature back.

...what about DeDe Dorsey?

To me, that all depends on Chris Perry. If the team keeps Perry, then I don't see Dorsey on the active roster. I also don't see Dorsey willing to sit on the practice squad waiting for Perry to get hurt. To keep Dorsey, the only thing the Bengals can do, with the talent at that position competing for playing time next season, is hope that another team doesn't pick him up.

However, that completely changes if the team decides to let Perry go out of fear of injury.