Last season was the first since 2006 that the Bengals didn’t have Domata Peko playing on the defensive line. To compensate for those snaps lost, Ryan Glasgow was tasked with contributing early and often in his rookie season.
You might be surprised to learn Glasgow actually played 35.95 percent of defensive snaps last season. (And you thought Bengals defensive rookies didn’t play, didn’t you!)
The team drafted Andrew Billings as an eventual replacement for Peko in the 2016 NFL Draft, but a meniscus injury suffered in his first training camp caused Billings to miss all of his rookie year, and his potential impact in 2017 was jeopardized.
Glasgow became a contingency plan for Billings if he didn’t return 100 percent healthy or effective, and Glasgow ended up playing the second-most snaps behind Geno Atkins at defensive tackle. However, he’ll have more competition for that distinction this year.
Age: 24 (Born 9/30/93)
Weight: 302 pounds
Hometown: Aurora, Illinois
Experience: Second season
In the second year of his four-year, $2.189 million rookie contract, Glasgow has a cap hit deal of $659,912 this season. He will not be eligible for an extension until the conclusion of the 2019 league year, and is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent in 2021.
One of the oldest rookies in the 2017 draft class, Glasgow’s extensive collegiate experience proved to be valuable as a rookie. Playing in 45 games and starting 33 of them on a consistently talented front four at Michigan, Glasgow came into the league technically and mentally refined. And the skillset he showed from college matched how he looked in his rookie season
As a run-defender, Glasgow plays with a low and square base that consistently puts him in a good position to hold down gaps and cross the guard and center’s face if need be. Usually for young defensive tackles, losing the ball carrier or getting lost in the flow of the play are prevalent issues, but Glasgow was an exception. Glasgow only made 12 solo tackles on the year, but his high-effort playing style was always noticeable.
Glasgow’s biggest knock is that he’s limited as a pass-rusher. He’s not an explosive player and his get-off doesn’t threaten any interior offensive lineman. He can have success with power as a rusher, but that lack of quickness off the snap will make it difficult to produce against the pass. Throughout the season, he only recored a handful of pressures, and was rarely used as a downhill 1-gap penetrator, despite most of his snaps coming from a 3-technique alignment. If Glasgow can get quicker with his hands, he can compensate for his other issues and become more competent as a pass-rusher.
Rarely do the Bengals cut ties with second year draft picks who are drafted as high and contributed as much as Glasgow did in his rookie year. The team brought in Chris Baker in free agency and Andrew Brown in the draft, which makes the defensive line room a bit more crowded, but Glasgow’s spot will be safe. Baker’s deal is just for this season and Brown has to prove that he’s good enough to make the final roster himself.
The team likely has long-term plans for Glasgow and as long as he plays to his established baseline this preseason, he’ll be fine. It’s during the season when Glasgow needs to prove he is an asset keeping around going forward.
Roster odds: 90 percent