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Dave Lapham believes NFL could suspend Adam Jones for 2-4 games

The always-insightful Dave Lapham shared his take on Adam Jones’ offseason drama, why the Bengals drafted Joe Mixon, how John Ross will factor into the offense as a rookie and more.

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

For decades, Dave Lapham has been a major part of the Cincinnati Bengals, both as a player and more recently, a radio analyst.

Last week, Lapham joined WCPO's The Andy Furman Podcast and recalled getting his start in the radio booth, among other things. (The interview starts around the 19 minute mark of the podcast.)

Mike Brown’s assistant, Jan, called me and said Mike wanted to see me. I went down to Mike Brown’s office and Mike Brown said “the color analyst position is open on the Bengals’ radio network, I think you’d be good and why don’t you go ahead and go there and go up to the radio station and audition, or whatever you have to do”. So I went up there to audition and meet the people I had to meet,” Lapham remembered as he enters his 32nd year in the job.

Lapham also talked about getting younger and faster on offense and how first round draft pick John Ross factors into that. Lapham isn’t sure Ross will start in his rookie year, but, says he’ll be involved in a lot of packages. He also thinks Josh Malone’s speed could be a big factor, similar to what Marvin Jones was for the Bengals. Interestingly, A.J. Green also compared Malone to Jones.

Of Joe Mixon, Lapham said the team did their due diligence and beyond on the second round pick in deciding whether to draft him.

“They did extensive research on him. That means coaches, teammates, students in the student body, trainers, equipment guys, professors, and found out about him and also brought him to Cincinnati to vet him even further. And long-term they feel he may be a safer prospect than (Dalvin) Cook from Florida State,” Lapham said, while adding that Mixon is looking to move on from his past and prove his worth in Cincinnati.

Another offseason controversy that’s surrounded the Bengals is that of Adam Jones. Lapham believes the league could suspend Jones for two to four games due to his offseason arrest. The legal charges against Jones were settled last week, but the NFL still has the right to hand down its own punishment. We should expect the NFL to do just that and Lapham believes it’s a real possibility.

“You look at it and you wonder what the league is going to do. It wouldn’t shock me if he’s suspended for four games,” Lapham said. “Ya know, two to four games, somewhere in that range. That would not surprise me. He knows he has problems maintaining his composure and handling things the way they need to be handled.”

Lapham also spoke about how the NFL has changed since he was a player. The usage of linebackers and safety concerns are two of the biggest changes Lapham mentioned.

“People want to widen formations as much as the possibly can, get people working in space. I mean, a lot of these great linebackers of year’s past like Ray Nitschke-type linebackers would have a harder time in today’s NFL,” he said. “You don’t really see big run-stuffing linebackers on the field anymore, you’ll see smaller linebackers that can run or safety-hybrid type linebacker guys that can cover people and then come down the box and defend the run, if necessary.

“The game has changed, from a strategic x’s and o’s standpoint. But, also, the player safety issue is so big now with the danger people recognize with the concussion issues and everything that’s gone along with that. Training camps are nowhere near as demanding as they were.”

You can listen to the full podcast here, during which Lapham also talks about Marvin Lewis coaching through the final year of his contract, playing at Syracuse, playing for Paul Brown and more.