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Paul Guenther impressed by Geno Atkins' progress

Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Geno Atkins is making significant progress this offseason, going from a rehabilitation of an ACL last year to spending this offseason training.

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Geno Atkins tore his ACL on Halloween night in 2013. Rather than training and improving, Atkins was forced to rehabilitate throughout the ensuing offseason. After a disappointing 2014 season (compared to his overall production) being overlooked because of his injury, Atkins has been training and preparing this offseason for the coming year.

And according to defensive coordinator Paul Guenther, he's dominating.

This is a complete reversal from last season when Guenther called him "just a guy out there" after the Bengals lost their fourth straight wild card game in January.

"I always tell them our best players have to play good in these big games," Guenther said after the wild card loss. "All the time. It can't be sometimes. It's got to be all the time. If our best players don't play good then there is a big chance we are not going to play good."

Atkins is entering the third-year of a five-year extension, which he signed prior to the 2013 season. The contract lasts through 2018.