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Bengals News (9/6): Fresh Apple

Eli Apple is looking forward to a fresh start with the Bengals in Week 1.

Cincinnati Bengals Mandatory Minicamp Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

4 projected starters Bengals fans should be worried about vs. Vikings
The Cincinnati Bengals kick off their 2021 campaign against the Minnesota Vikings on Sept. 12 at Paul Brown Stadium. The Bengals have their 53-man roster set and ready to go for when that game finally arrives but not everyone on the team has fans feeling great about how the season could go.

Bengals: Zac Taylor is the second-most likely NFL coach to get fired
Taylor was hired in February of 2019 after the franchise moved on from longtime head coach Marvin Lewis. The hope was that Taylor would be able to drag the organization out the depths of mediocrity that they had settled into.

Joe Burrow Projected to Have Record Setting Season for Cincinnati Bengals
Joe Burrow has only played in 10 NFL games and is coming off of a torn ACL and MCL, but that isn't stopping analysts from having high expectations for the second-year quarterback. Burrow is expected to set or get close to breaking multiple Bengals passing records this season according to Sports Illustrated's latest projections.

Former Buckeye excited for ‘fresh start’ with Bengals
Waynes appears destined to open the season on the sideline because of a hamstring injury that occurred Aug. 25 during practice, and now the Bengals are counting on another player who has dealt with injury issues with former New York Giants’ 2016 first-round draft pick Eli Apple next in line.

Joe Burrow eyes playoffs, AFC North crown for Bengals in 2021
The Bengals were indeed disappointing near the end of most games in 2020 as the roster overhaul continued. This offseason saw the front office and coaching staff continue to remake the roster with ideal leaders and schematic fits.

Around the league

Giants RB Saquon Barkley (knee) close to being fully cleared for Week 1 vs. Broncos
Both the Giants and Barkley have been cautious. Most players declare themselves ready to play, usually boasting they're in the best shape of their lives post-injury. However, Barkley has tread cautiously, suggesting multiple times in the lead-up to training camp and preseason that he wasn't sure when he'd be fully cleared.

Cowboys G Zack Martin tests positive for COVID-19, will not play in season opener vs. Bucs
Head coach Mike McCarthy told reporters Sunday that All-Pro guard Zack Martin has tested positive for COVID-19 and will not play against the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night. The team placed Martin on the reserve/COVID-19 list shortly thereafter.

2011 NFL Draft class worthy of greater appreciation a decade after entering league
"It's always been greatness," he said after a recent practice. "I want to be as great as I can possibly be, so the motivation is being the best, and greatness is being the best. As a team, that's winning the Super Bowl and getting to the top, to the peak, of what you do. As an individual, that's being the best at your position and what you do. For me, every day is an opportunity. If I go in the weight room, if I go to the field and I run, if I go out to practice -- somebody is the best that day. Somebody ran the hardest, somebody lifted the most, somebody had the most sacks. At the end of the day, somebody is the best, and at the end of the season, somebody is the best, and at the end of the decade, somebody is the best. Somebody is the best to ever do it in every sport and every position. That's what we're all chasing, and if we're not chasing being the absolute best to ever do it, I don't know why you're out there, besides chasing a paycheck or it being a job."

Super Bowl LVI predictions: Chiefs vs. 49ers in L.A.?
With the 2021 NFL season just around the corner, our analysts predict which teams will compete for -- and capture -- the Lombardi Trophy at Super Bowl LVI on February 13, 2022, in Inglewood, California.