The Cincinnati Bengals are getting decimated on the injury front.
After making it through the first half of the season relatively unscathed (outside of Tyler Eifert), the Bengals now can’t seem to catch a break in this regard. The latest two players to go down with injuries are starting offensive tackles Cedric Ogbuehi and Andre Smith.
Both players went down during Sunday’s loss to the Vikings, and it now appears their seasons may be over. According to Bengals.com’s Geoff Hobson, Smith and Ogbuehi may be placed on injured reserve soon due to their injuries:
Bengals need two tackles for last two games. Ced and Andre sound like they’re out for the year— Geoff Hobson (@GeoffHobsonCin) December 18, 2017
And Chris Roling for the win:
They've needed two tackles all year. https://t.co/r41w8LXNy8— Chris Roling (@Chris_Roling) December 18, 2017
In all seriousness...it’s too true. Arguably the Bengals’ biggest hole right now is at offensive tackle, so of course they lose both starting tackles.
Ogbuehi has been inadequate, abominable, deficient, and every other synonym for ‘bad’ as an NFL tackle could be through his first three seasons. He’s been arguably the biggest draft bust of the Marvin Lewis era, but then again, that’s what it appeared Smith was through his first two seasons, so maybe Ogbuehi can have a Smith-like turnaround in his career going forward.
Speaking of Smith, he was signed to a one-year deal this offseason to become the starting right guard, a job he ultimately lost to Trey Hopkins. However, Smith would go on to become the starting right tackle after Jake Fisher was lost for the season due to a heart condition.
If both players are indeed out for the rest of the season, Eric Winston will be the starting left tackle, while it’s unclear who will start at right tackle. Hopkins could move from right guard to right tackle, but I think it’s possible Kent Perkins is signed off the practice squad to start there.
Regardless of who plays there over the final two games, this is easily the team’s biggest need going into the offseason.