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Coach says "future is bright" for rookie Russell Bodine

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Paul Alexander on Bodine: "He had a better rookie year than a number of guys we’ve had go on and become good players. The future is bright. I think he is going to be a bright center with good leadership."

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Because running back Jeremy Hill won the offensive player of the year, Bengals.com excluded him from consideration naming Ryan Hewitt and Russell Bodine as co-rookies of the year.

In fact, there were two of them waiting in the wings with center Russell Bodine and fullback/tight end Ryan Hewitt taking co-Rookies of the Year honors.

"Bash Brothers,’ is taken, so call them the, "Cousins of Collision." The pair reflect an amped-up physicality that offensive coordinator Hue Jackson demanded in his first season and expects even more in his second. They also run across the Mel Kiper Jr. spectrum.

Do you agree?

Hewitt added an impressive enough resume, more than anyone had anticipated, I'm sure -- aside from the people that arbitrarily point out that this is what they expected back in August. A few points on the Bengals.com selection:

1) Why can't Hill be nominated for this as well? He is a rookie, after all. It saturates the actual award when add preconditions exist to avoid repetition. Wouldn't you honor a player by giving him all the hardware he deserves? Then again, who cares... it's just an article that recognizes these rookies.

2) What other rookies should be considered? Cornerback Darqueze Dennard? Nah. Like Dennard, Will Clarke and Marquis Flowers struggled to obtain any playing time. James Wright? Eh. Hewitt was viewed as the fifth-best fullback, generating an overall Pro Football Focus score of +4.1. He also passed the eye test.

I was up-and-down on Bodine. The coaches remain high on him:

"He had a good season. When you factor in he was a rookie, it was really good," Alexander says via Bengals.com. "He had a better rookie year than a number of guys we've had go on and become good players. The future is bright. I think he is going to be a bright center with good leadership. I think he’ll be similar to a center like Braham in a lot of ways, both in personality and skill."

"And they became good players," Alexander says. "There’s a lot of room for improvement, most of it technical and he’ll get that as he goes. The professional techniques are dramatically different than the college techniques. You take what you’ve done your whole life and blow them up and it’s tough. He’s learning as he goes."