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Bengals Preseason Depth Chart Released; Reaction and Analysis

Depth charts always give fans and the media alike an idea of where various players stand on the roster.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Bengals released their first depth chart of 2015 on Monday.

As is the case on training camp depth charts, most of the rookies, even the high draft picks, are at or near the bottom of the depth chart at their respective positions. Players like Mario Alford, Jake Kumerow, Marcus Hardison, DeShawn Williams, and P.J. Dawson are low on the initial depth chart, despite strong showings in training camp thus far.

It is worth pointing out though that rookie tackle Jake Fisher is the No. 2 left tackle behind Andrew Whitworth. That's how close Fisher is to potentially going from the bench to a starting role. Here are some other interesting depth chart observations.

Wide receiver

With a host of position battles throughout the roster, there are a few interesting developments at several key spots. Perhaps the most notable is Mohamed Sanu being ahead of Marvin Jones at the No. 2 wide receiver spot. Jones is clearly the better receiver when healthy, but it's Sanu who's been more durable thus far in his career.

Tight end

At tight end/H-back, Ryan Hewitt and Tyler Eifert are the projected starters to no surprise. However, just like at left tackle, there's a rookie sitting there at the No. 2 spots in case the starters go down. Tyler Kroft and C.J. Uzomah are already the No. 2 guys if either Hewitt or Eifert get injured this year.

The fact that Uzomah is already ahead of Jake Murphy is also telling of how well the fifth-round pick has looked. Murphy was on the Bengals' practice squad last year and has had a good showing in OTAs and training camp.


At quarterback, AJ McCarron has managed to take hold of the No. 2 spot behind Andy Dalton. Despite a slow start in training camp, McCarron is improving daily and is still expected to be Dalton's backup this year with Cincinnati keeping only those two quarterbacks on the final 53-man roster.

Defensive end

At defensive end, Will Clarke is listed as the third-string right end behind Wallace Gilberry and the injured Michael Johnson. On the other side, Margus Hunt is the No. 2 left end behind Carlos Dunlap. To this point, many thought Clarke had done enough to be ahead of Hunt on the depth chart, but that's not the case for now. Then again, with Johnson out for the time being, Clarke is essentially the No. 2 right end behind Gilberry, who likely will start as long as Johnson is out with his sprained MCL. Though, Johnson is not expected to miss regular-season games.


And last but certainly not least, cornerback reflects what has been the case in training camp thus far. Adam Jones and Dre Kirkpatrick are the primary boundary corners with veteran Leon Hall and second-year man Darqueze Dennard behind them. Though the Bengals play primarily in a nickel defense with three corners, they opted to go with a traditional 4-3 alignment in their first depth chart. That leaves a bit of a question as to who that slot corner is between Hall and Dennard. We'll have to wait for actual preseason games to get more clarity there.

Here is a look at the full depth chart:


WR1 A.J. Green Brandon Tate Denarius Moore Tevin Reese
Mario Alford
LT Andrew Whitworth Jake Fisher Cedric Ogbuehi
LG Clint Boling Trey Hopkins Tanner Hawkinson
C Russell Bodine T.J. Johnson Chris Jasperse Jake Smith
RG Kevin Zeitler Dan France
RT Andre Smith Eric Winston Matthew O'Donnell
TE Tyler Eifert C.J. Uzomah Jake Murphy Matt Lengel
TE Ryan Hewitt Tyler Kroft John Peters
WR2 Mohamed Sanu Marvin Jones Greg Little Onterio McCalebb
Jake Kumerow
Desmond Lawrence
QB Andy Dalton AJ McCarron Josh Johnson Keith Wenning
RB Jeremy Hill Giovani Bernard Cedric Peerman Rex Burkhead
James Wilder Jr.
Terrell Watson
Mark Weisman







LDE Carlos Dunlap Margus Hunt Sam Montgomery
NT Domata Peko Pat Sims Kwame Geathers Kalafitoni Pole
DT Geno Atkins Brandon Thompson Devon Still Marcus Hardison
Shawn Williams
RDE Michael Johnson Wallace Gilberry Will Clarke
SLB Emmanuel Lamur Marquis Flowers Jayson DiManche Chris Carter
MLB Rey Maualuga Vincent Rey Nico Johnson Trevor Roach
WLB Vontaze Burfict A.J. Hawk P.J. Dawson Sean Porter
LCB Dre Kirkpatrick Darqueze Dennard Brandon Ghee Josh Shaw
RCB Adam Jones Leon Hall Chris Lewis-Harris Troy Hill
SS George Iloka Shiloh Keo Derron Smith Floyd Raven
FS Reggie Nelson Shawn Williams Erick Dargan

Special Teams

P Kevin Huber
KO Mike Nugent Tom Obarski
LS Clark Harris
H Kevin Huber
PK Mike Nugent
PR Adam Jones Brandon Tate Giovani Bernard Mario Alford
KR Brandon Tate Adam Jones Mario Alford Onterio McCalebb