When you look at Quan Cosby's statistics, you've very under whelmed. It's like going on a diet and buying boxes of Lean Cuisine, realizing that you're actually hungrier after having a meal. Playing 32 games in two seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, Cosby has only six career receptions for 71 yards receiving -- and three of those receptions happened during the Bengals 27-24 loss to the San Diego Chargers in 2009.
Then as often the case, you suddenly snap out of your haze and realize that teams actually do have something called Special Teams. And Quan Cosby is one of the most important pieces. During his rookie year, Cosby set a franchise record for most yards on punt returns. No. He didn't just set it. He crushed the 25-year old record by nearly 100 yards. Cosby's 2010 average on punt returns dropped by nearly five yards. You could easily point towards a declined special teams cast due defensive injuries requiring most of the initial special teams players to take up defensive roles, leaving special teams in worse condition.
On 700 WLW's Sports Talk with Lance McAlister on Wednesday, Cosby says that he's "100% sure" that Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer isn't coming back. Add Cosby to the list of players that either say Palmer isn't coming back, or that if he did, it could actually be detrimental to the team. In fact the only person we've actually heard claim that Palmer will return is named Rick. And Rick only got out from beneath his rock to check out a billboard on the highway promoting Geico.
As for Cosby's chances of making the team next year, that will largely hinge on the roster in front of him. If Chad Ochocinco returns and assuming A.J. Green, Jerome Simpson, Jordan Shipley and Andre Caldwell are roster locks, Quan would likely battle Stanford rookie Ryan Whalen for that sixth spot. Technically Shay Hodge could be a factor, but yea. Predictably the battle will come down to the player that benefits special teams the most. Whalen could be a more universal guy, but Cosby still appears like the leading punt returner. And before you argue that Adam Jones could do the job, let's just remind ourselves that legal issues could be an issue and the more simplistic question, "do the Bengals want their (possibly) starting cornerback, who had two surgical procedures on his neck returning punts?" Let's just file that one under, "unknown". Along with the monetary value of keeping the receiver for over $6 million, this is a convincing reason that could end with Chad Ochocinco leaving; freeing up space for Whalen and Cosby. We'll explore that reasoning as we draw closer to the league dissolving their migraine-inducing lockout.