There's a belief that the Cincinnati Bengals could keep four tight ends this year, starting with Jermaine Gresham and rookie Tyler Eifert, rounding out the roster with Orson Charles and Alex Smith. Obviously Gresham and Eifert are going to command the most attention with Cincinnati's passing game. However as Joe Reedy with the Cincinnati Enquirer notes, Smith is looking impressive during the offseason training program.
(Bengals offensive coordinator Jay) Gruden pointed out one player having an outstanding offseason program has been free agent tight end Alex Smith. The former Browns TE and Dalton nearly connected on a nice double move down the sideline Wednesday. It’s obvious how well he’s done fitting in to this point and adds to the depth at what last year was a paper-thin position.
Smith could figure as the team's third tight end (not suggesting depth, though that should be implied), while Charles, selected in the fourth round of the 2012 NFL draft, takes a more active role as a fullback.
"He’s done well in picking up his new position, but Jay Gruden points out the primary concern is learning how to attack downhill in the run game," Reedy wrote regarding Charles.
Even if the Bengals keep all four, you have to figure someone will be on their way out. Will it be fullback Chris Pressley? Or do the Bengals keep Pressley as the primary fullback with a more versatile Charles playing on the line and the backfield, depending on situations, scenarios and potential match-ups? It's an intriguing storyline as he head into training camp next month.