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It’s now or never for Tyler Boyd in Cincinnati

Tyler Boyd is entering his third season, and he needs to build off a strong finish to the 2017 season to stick around long-term, or else, other young receivers will pass him by.

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

Tyler Boyd finished the 2017 with one of the most memorable playing in Bills history.

On 4th down, he took a pass 49 yards for the game-winning touchdown. This play knocked the Ravens out of the playoffs, and ended the NFL’s longest playoff drought for Buffalo.

However, what exactly did he do for the Bengals last season? He only caught 22 passes for 225 yards with two touchdowns. 130 of those yards came in the final two weeks of the season. He did this while playing the third-most snaps of any receiver on the Bengals roster last season. This was disappointing after having a promising rookie season the year before.

Will Boyd be able to show he was worth being a second round pick in 2016?

Tyler Boyd

Height: 6’2”

Weight: 197 pounds

College: Pittsburgh

Hometown: Clairton, PA

Experience: Entering his third season

Cap Status

Boyd is entering the third year of his rookie deal. He is set to make $837,179 in 2018. He currently counts for $1,161,537 against the cap, and if he is waived the team will take a $648,716 dead cap penalty.

Boyd is set to hit free agency following the 2019 season.


Boyd was selected in the second round of the 2016 draft. The pick was met with mixed reviews, but he did well his rookie season. He caught 54 passes for 603 yards and one touchdown. He also ran the ball four times for 58 yards. His numbers were helped by the fact A.J. Green missed time at the end of the season, but their was still hope that he could be a bigger part of the offense in 2017.

Obviously, most of the Bengals offense suffered in 2017, but Boyd was hit especially hard. The first sign that this may not be Boyd’s year was when he was a healthy scratch in Week 2 when John Ross was set to make his debut.

The pecking order became clear, but Ross never really got in Boyd’s way of playing time again that season. Still, Boyd never took Brandon LaFell’s spot, and the team seemed to be recovering from the fact Ken Zampese didn’t have a great game plan going into the season.

Still, Boyd was very active the final two weeks of the season when the team knocked two playoff bound teams out of contention. Is it a sign of things to come, though?

Roster Odds

At this point the Bengals have loaded up with young receivers. In 2017, the Bengals drafted Ross and Josh Malone, and in this years draft they added Auden Tate, who has already been turning heads with his catch radius. Not to mention players like Cody Core, Alex Erickson and even LaFell will be fighting for roster spots.

Boyd is one of the more veteran receivers on the Bengals roster, and it honestly seems like he has been here longer than two seasons. The odds of Boyd getting cut are pretty small. He would have to play pretty poorly while everyone else plays beyond what they are expected to.

A more likely route off the team would probably be via a trade for a late-round pick. This is also unlikely, but if Boyd isn’t on the Bengals in 2018 it will be because he was traded.

Overall, Boyd should secure a spot on the roster. I think he still ends up being the third or fourth receiver on the team behind A.J. Green and Ross, but he has a good chance of making LaFell expendable.

Roster Odds: 75 percent.