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Bengals Bytes (2/4): Testing the waters

Marvin Jones talks about how he's going to approach free agency. The most recent mock draft from Todd McShay has the Bengals taking a Buckeye. Rob Gronkowski has some criticism for the Pro Bowl.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Home or away, Cincinnati Bengals' defense was consistent in 2015
With the offseason here for the Cincinnati Bengals, we're taking a daily look at a few statistics that either defined the past season, or went overlooked during it. Today, we highlight the following number: 17.4 Ask any players or coaches who were part of the Bengals' 2015 defense what the unit's goal was for the season and they will tell you it was simply to keep opponents off the scoreboard.

Braxton Miller could be the first-round Buckeye the Bengals need
Ohio State, the nearby football factory an hour and a half from the Cincinnati Bengals' Paul Brown Stadium, will produce its share of first-round picks during this year's NFL draft. So many Buckeyes are expected to be snatched up early that ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay has seven (and an eighth player who began his career in Columbus before finishing up at Eastern Kentucky) of them going to the 31 teams making picks in his second mock draft.

Super Bowl Confidential: Players surprised Marvin Lewis hasn't won Lombardi trophy yet
NFL players had a logical answer when asked this season to name a current coach they thought would have won a Super Bowl by now. The Cincinnati Bengals' Marvin Lewis is the league's second-longest tenured coach, having just completed his 13th season with the franchise. Only the New England Patriots' Bill Belichick has been in place longer.

Bengals WR Marvin Jones excited to test free agency
Cincinnati Bengals wideout Marvin Jones is eager to test free agency, realizing he could be the belle of the ball in a soft wide-receiver market. "I love Cincinnati," Jones told NFL Media's Scott Hanson on Wednesday. "...But at the same time, I am a free agent. It wouldn't be good for me not to test the waters a little bit. It's just an exciting process."

Bengals: 5 Players Most Vital to 2016 Success
Remember what everyone says when there is an injury? There are 53 guys on the roster and even if they lost some of them, the Bengals have depth for someone to jump in and get the job done. Although some of the guys on this list are obvious and important pieces no matter how many guys they keep, others may be unexpected, especially as they grow into a starting role or even play a depth role in the end.

Random Bytes

Super Bowl Preview, and the Silly Complaints About Celebrations
The T.M.Q. Non-QB Non-RB N.F.L. M.V.P. Several not-quarterbacks not-running backs had remarkable seasons: defensive end J.J. Watt, offensive tackle Greg Robinson, receivers Julio Jones and Antonio Brown, center Russell Bodine, tight ends Tyler Eifert and Rob Gronkowski, guard Richie Incognito, linebacker NaVorro Bowman and safety Earl Thomas among them.

Father of Antonio Smith of Broncos dies after complications from heart surgery
Marty Williams, the father of Denver Broncos lineman Antonio Smith. has died after complications from a recent heart surgery. Williams, who has been incarcerated in prison for more than two decades, died after complications from recent heart surgery.

2016 NFL Offseason: Top Players Who Could Be Cut
After the Super Bowl, the excitement that is the NFL never seems to end. Following the Big Game one of the first orders of business of every team involves examining the roster—extensions, signings, trades, free agency and players who will be cut.

Los Angeles Rams discuss Peyton Manning as option in 2016
The Rams have had internal discussions about bringing Peyton Manning to Los Angeles should he want to play another season, per a league source. Manning still is under contract to the Broncos for another year, but most around the league do not expect him to return to Denver next season, if he returns at all.

Rob Gronkowski: Pro Bowl 'might need to be changed'
The Pro Bowl has been a point of contention for players and fans for quite a while. The NFL has made numerous changes to the game over the years to promote competition and interest in the all-star contest, but it's still seen as the pariah of the NFL schedule despite its star power and prime location.