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Bengals News (7/23): Earning their shot

NFL undrafted free agents will be facing more of an uphill battle than ever without preseason games.

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North Carolina State v Wake Forest Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images

Former Wake Forest wide receiver Scotty Washington hopes to make the Bengals 2020 rosters.
Bengals rookie wide receiver Anthony "Scotty" Washington, named after his father and nicknamed by his older sister, is trying to make a name in the NFL under the most trying of happenstances. Namely, as a college free agent in the middle of a pandemic.

Cincinnati Bengals training camp questions: Is Joe Burrow ready to be a starter?
Because of COVID-19, it could take a little longer than expected for the rookie quarterback. The only time the Bengals' coaching staff has spent any in-person time with Burrow was during their 15-minute session at the NFL combine in February, before the pandemic forced restrictions and limitations around the country. And since Burrow didn't work out at the combine and had his pro day canceled, the Bengals still haven't seen the No. 1 overall pick throw this offseason.

Could Devonta Freeman end up in the AFC North?
CINCINNATI — Free agent running back Devonta Freeman is hoping to get signed in the near future after he was released by the Falcons in March. “We want to work out a deal in the immediate future, and we are open to any team,” Rosenhaus told ESPN's Adam Schefter. “He’s healthy, he’s in shape, and I’m on a mission to have him give a team a lift in late July.”

Five players the Cincinnati Bengals can't afford to see opt out
In the NFL’s most recent proposal to the player association, they’ve included the option to opt-out of the upcoming season. The potential of players sitting out should come as no surprise, as sports fans have already seen individuals go that route in other major sports leagues, such as the NBA and MLB.

2020 NFL offseason - Ranking most, least improved teams from 1-32, starting with Dolphins, Bengals
The 2020 NFL offseason was far from normal, but all 32 teams entered it with the same goal: to improve. Some teams did it better than others. Who improved the most during the past six months? Who got worse? Who is pretty much the same as when we last saw them?

Three veteran cut candidates heading into Bengals' training camp
Before taking Joe Burrow with the first overall pick in the draft, the Bengals’ front office spent more money in free agency than ever before. Spending big bucks on players like D.J. Reader and Trae Waynes was a positive surprise for many fans. These moves are an indication that the team is trying harder than ever before to win games.

Cincinnati Bengals roster: Top offensive position battles in preseason
Johnson joined the Bengals last season as a raw tackle from Pittsburgh. He improved enough in practice to the point where the Bengals gave him a Week 17 start at left tackle. He performed admirably in his first career start against the Browns. The Bengals want to give him an opportunity to be the starter on the right side.

Green's return should be big boost to potentially deep Bengals receiving corps
This part takes a look at the wide receivers and tight ends and who are locks to make the 53-man roster when it's finalized on Sept. 5, who are likely to make it, who are in a battle to make it and who are long shots to make it:

Around the league

Brown doesn't want to retire, demands NFL finishes investigation
The intimidation allegation is one of several off-field incidents for which the NFL is investigating Brown. The league is also looking into civil claims of sexual assault and rape against the 32-year-old receiver. In addition, the wideout pleaded no contest in June to burglary and battery charges stemming from a January incident in Florida.

Chase Young signs rookie contract with Washington
Washington's No. 2 overall pick, Chase Young, tweeted a picture Thursday morning putting pen to paper on his four-year deal. As with all first-round picks, the pact comes with a fifth-year team option.

Report: Woody Johnson investigated for comments as ambassador
Ambassador Woody Johnson, who purchased the New York Jets in 2000 and currently is the U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom, issued a statement denying allegations within a CNN report he was investigated by a State Department watchdog for allegations of racist and sexist comments made to staff.

Fans required to wear face coverings at NFL games in 2020
It remains unclear to what extent fans will be able to attend games. The Jets and Giants announced this week they would play home games without fans. A number of teams are planning for dramatically reduced numbers of fans in the stands at this point.