In other cornerback news, Brandon Ghee has been exuding confidence, saying he's not just fighting for a roster spot. "I'm trying to play," said Ghee earlier this week. "I'm trying to earn a starting position on this team." Even Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green, who has gone up against Ghee during offseason workouts, has been impressed.
"Ghee is out there competing every day and he’s one of the best corners that we have here," said Pro Bowl wide receiver A.J. Green. "I feel like this year is going to be his year. I feel like he’s healthier and he’s playing fast."
If Ghee finally becomes the cornerback that the team envisioned when drafting him in the third-round, he'll make an extremely close battle that much closer. If he's ready to play by the regular season, Leon Hall will start. There's no doubt about that. Then it's a fight. Now common sense suggests that Dre Kirkpatrick will be the team's other starting cornerback, but that's not a lock. Johnathan Joseph only started nine of 16 games during his rookie season in 2006 and Leon Hall started ten the following year. Both were first-round selections during their respective rookie campaigns.
Despite that, Kirkpatrick and Nate Clements figure as the two gladiators battling for the second starting cornerback spot. However if age has generated enough space to allow someone else to start over Clements, Ghee could be as much in the mix as Kirkpatrick, who missed several offseason practices. No. OTAs and minicamp won't dictate the team's starting lineup. They do however help players, especially rookies, improve through repetitions and convert a learned playbook into instinct, which Kirkpatrick is lacking right now.
Either way we're happy. Ghee adding to the mix only raises the competitive level with everyone else, fighting not for just playing time, but a spot on the 2012 roster.