The Bengals’ offensive line is clearly a weakness on the offense, and the front office took great care in addressing it. They signed two internal free agents, two outside free agents, and drafted two rookies, including the top tackle prospect with the 11th overall pick.
As much as they did to fix it, however, repairing the offensive line still seems like an uphill battle, especially with Jonah Williams out for the season and uncertainty surrounding Clint Boling.
Pro Football Focus ranked all 32 offensive lines around the league, and slotted the Bengals in at 27.
27. CINCINNATI BENGALS
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP:
Left Tackle: Cordy Glenn
Left Guard: John Jerry
Center: Billy Price
Right Guard: John Miller
Right Tackle: Bobby Hart
One step forward, two steps back. The Bengals looked set at the left tackle spot after they selected Jonah Williams with the 11th overall pick of the 2019 NFL Draft, but a torn labrum for the Alabama product means that it’s right back to the drawing board for a Bengals side that ranked 24th among teams in pass-blocking efficiency last year. Cordy Glenn is now set to return to left tackle after he earned a 60.9 overall grade there last year, while center Billy Price will hope to move swiftly on from a rookie season that consisted of only 558 snaps and zero single-game grades above 64.0. After all the offseason shuffling, the team remains steadfast in their support of Bobby Hart at right tackle, a player who hasn’t graded above 60.0 since 2015.
The theme here is consistent: players failed to live up to their potential in 2018.
This is true, with the aforementioned Glenn and Price dealing with injuries. Hart was healthy all season, though, so he has absolutely no excuse.
The Bengals round out their offensive line with two free agent pickups at two guard spots, Miller on the right and Jerry on the left. Since Clint Boling is gone according to his projection, and the presumed left guard moved out to tackle thanks to the Williams injury, the Bengals will have to work with what they have.
That left guard spot will be interesting to watch during training camp, since Jerry will presumably have to compete with Christian Westerman, Michael Jordan, and maybe even Trey Hopkins for that spot.
Whoever starts, they need to live up to their potential this season, or Andy Dalton and Zac Taylor will have a rough year ahead of them.