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The Bengals have the youngest roster in the NFL; here’s what it means

Only six players on the Bengals’ roster are 30 or older.

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Buffalo Bills Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Bengals released a number of veterans this offseason including Adam Jones, Brandon LaFell, George Iloka, Chris Baker and most recently Michael Johnson. Though, after less than 48 hours, Johnson was re-signed.

In parting ways with veterans, the average age on the team has dropped so low that the Bengals possessed the NFL’s youngest roster as of roster cut down day on Saturday.

Every year, Jimmy Kempski of the PhillyVoice equates the average age of all 32 NFL teams and this year, the Bengals have an average age of 25.2, which is the youngest in the league. The Browns follow closely behind with an average age of 25.3. This is the youngest roster of the Marvin Lewis era in Cincinnati.

In 2013 and 2014, the Bengals’ cut down day average age was 25.9. In 2015 and 2016 it was 26.3. In 2017 it was 25.5, which ranked third youngest in the NFL. And now, the Bengals have created the NFL’s youngest roster with an average age of 25.2.

With that said, Johnson re-signing with the Bengals on Monday morning brought the Bengals’ average age to 25.38. And, after the Browns made a bunch of moves on Sunday, right now their average age is 25.17. So, Suddenly the Bengals don’t have the actual youngest roster, but they did on Saturday.

The rest of the top 10 youngest NFL rosters behind the Bengals and Browns include the Cowboys, Rams, Jaguars, Vikings, Texans, Colts, Seahawks and Packers — in that order.

“We’re a young football team, but one that’s played a lot of football,” Marvin Lewis said following the roster being announced. “That’s the thing you have to look at and see when you have (Andy) Dalton, (A.J.) Green, (Clint) Boling and these guys who started so much football and played so much football so long here throughout their careers. Then you go to the next guy, (Dre) Kirkpatrick, they’ve played a lot of football.”

Lewis makes it clear that though the Bengals are young, they still have a number of experienced veterans, including many of the most important guys on the team: the starting quarterback, WR1, starting left tackle and a starting cornerback.

“You bring in (left tackle) Cordy (Glenn) and the back end of that would be Preston Brown. They’re young in years and in the prime of what their careers are about,” Lewis added. “And they’ve played a lot of winning football. They’re hungry and disappointed the way we’ve finished the seasons the last two years and we have to go back and win the championship.”

Some of the youngest guys on the Bengals’ roster are Mark Walton, Auden Tate, Malik Jefferson and Jessie Bates, all of whom are 21. Billy Price, Sam Hubbard, Darius Phillips, Josh Malone, and Joe Mixon are all 22. John Ross, Jordan Evans, Jordan Willis, Alex Redmond, Carl Lawson, Tyler Boyd, Davontae Harris and Andrew Billings are all 23. That is a lot of young guys, many of whom are projected starters.

The oldest guys on the roster are Clark Harris (34), Kevin Huber (33), Vincent Rey (31), Geno Atkins (30), A.J. Green (30) and Andy Dalton (30). Everyone else on the roster is younger than 30. So of the six guys on the roster who are 30 or older, two are special teamers and one is a backup.

The Bengals are YOUNG. Is that a good thing?


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