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Bengals release first depth chart of 2017 season

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The Bengals have unveiled their first official depth chart of 2017. While there aren’t any huge developments, seeing guys like William Jackson III and Nick Vigil move up is good to see.

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals-Training Camp Kareem Elgazzar/The Cincinnati Enquirer-USA TODAY NETWORK

The Cincinnati Bengals and Tampa Bay Buccaneers will square off on Friday night in Week 1 of the preseason.

Ahead of this, both teams are putting out their depth charts to give media and fans an idea of what the pecking order on their rosters looks like. For the Bengals, it's a lot of the same names and faces occupying the top spots, though there are some notable surprises.

Perhaps the biggest of which is William Jackson III already passing by Darqueze Dennard on the depth chart, though it’s probably more because the team doesn’t have a slot cornerback position on this projection. That’s the spot where Dennard likely plays this year, but it’s still noteworthy that Jackson is ahead of him on the boundary.

As expected, Nick Vigil is the starting strongside linebacker. The second-year backer had a promising rookie season. Combined with a good offseason showing this year, Vigil looks poised to lock this spot down for the 2017 season.

For the most part, we’re seeing tenured starters and veteran backups occupying the top two spots throughout the roster. That’s to be expected in Week 1 of the preseason, but that doesn’t mean it will remain the case in Week 1 of the regular season.

Here's the latest look at the Bengals' depth chart entering their first preseason game:

Offense

Quarterback:

  1. Andy Dalton
  2. AJ McCarron
  3. Jeff Driskel

Running Back:

  1. Jeremy Hill
  2. Giovani Bernard
  3. Cedric Peerman
  4. Joe Mixon
  5. Tra Carson
  6. Stanley ‘Boom’ Williams
  7. Jarveon Williams

H-Back/Fullback:

  1. Ryan Hewitt
  2. Cethan Carter
  3. Darrin Laufasa

Wide Receiver 1:

  1. A.J. Green
  2. Cody Core
  3. Alex Erickson
  4. Josh Malone
  5. Alonzo Russell
  6. Karel Hamilton

Wide Receiver 2:

  1. Brandon LaFell
  2. Tyler Boyd
  3. John Ross
  4. Jake Kumerow
  5. Chris Brown
  6. Kermit Whitfield

Tight End:

  1. Tyler Eifert
  2. Tyler Kroft
  3. C.J. Uzomah
  4. Mason Schreck

Left Tackle:

  1. Cedric Ogbuehi
  2. Eric Winston
  3. Landon Lechler

Right Tackle:

  1. Jake Fisher
  2. Eric Winston
  3. Kent Perkins

Left Guard:

  1. Clint Boling
  2. Christian Westerman
  3. J.J. Dielman
  4. Dustin Stanton

Right Guard:

  1. Andre Smith
  2. Trey Hopkins
  3. Alex Redmond
  4. Cameron Lee

Center:

  1. Russell Bodine
  2. T.J. Johnson

Defense

Left Defensive End:

  1. Carlos Dunlap
  2. Will Clarke
  3. Wallace Gilberry
  4. Marcus Hardison

Right Defensive End:

  1. Michael Johnson
  2. Jordan Willis
  3. Chris Smith
  4. Ryan Brown

Defensive Tackle:

  1. Geno Atkins
  2. Brandon Thompson
  3. Ryan Glasgow
  4. David Dean

Nose Tackle:

  1. Pat Sims
  2. Andrew Billings
  3. DeShawn Williams
  4. Josh Tupou

Middle Linebackers:

  1. Kevin Minter
  2. Vincent Rey
  3. Hardy Nickerson
  4. Brandon Bell

Strongside Linebackers:

  1. Nick Vigil
  2. Carl Lawson
  3. P.J. Dawson
  4. Bryson Albright

Weakside Linebackers:

  1. Vontaze Burfict
  2. Marquis Flowers
  3. Jordan Evans

Left Cornerback:

  1. Dre Kirkpatrick
  2. Josh Shaw*
  3. Bene Benwikere
  4. Tony McRae

Right Cornerback:

  1. Adam Jones
  2. William Jackson III
  3. Darqueze Dennard*
  4. KeiVarae Russell

Free Safety:

  1. George Iloka
  2. Clayton Fejedelem
  3. Demetrious Cox

Strong Safety:

  1. Shawn Williams
  2. Derron Smith
  3. Cedric Thompson
  4. Brandon Wilson

Special teams

Kicker:

  1. Randy Bullock
  2. Jake Elliott

Punter:

  1. Kevin Huber

Long Snapper:

  1. Clark Harris

Kickoff Returner:

  1. Alex Erickson
  2. Joe Mixon
  3. Kermit Whitfield
  4. Tra Carson

Punt Returner:

  1. Adam Jones
  2. Alex Erickson
  3. Tyler Boyd

*Note: There is no starting slot position, which would have likely gone to Darqueze Dennard or Josh Shaw.

Key observations:

  • Mixon is currently the fourth running back on the depth chart.
  • Core is the No. 2 wide receiver at WR1, while Ross is the No. 3 wide receiver at WR2 behind LaFell and Boyd.
  • At tight end, Uzomah is listed third behind Eifert and Kroft.
  • At right guard, Smith is still ahead of Hopkins.
  • Dielman is listed at left guard, not center.
  • Sims is currently the No. 1 nose tackle, though Billings is expected to earn that job after the preseason.
  • Dawson is listed behind Lawson at strongside linebacker, marking one of the only “veterans” behind a rookie on the depth chart.
  • Bullock is ahead of Elliott at kicker.

What are your thoughts on the first Bengals depth chart of 2017?