The 2023 NFL Draft is over, and it’s time for teams to start preparing for the new season. One question which has and will continue to loom over the Cincinnati Bengals' offseason is what they plan to do with former first-round pick Jonah Williams.
The team’s blockbuster addition this offseason was former Kansas City Chiefs left tackle Orlando Brown Jr., who will start at the position and project Joe Burrow’s blindside. They signed Brown Jr. to a four-year, $64 million deal.
As for Williams, who had that position, he will be transitioning to the right tackle position and battling for the starting spot with Jackson Carman.
Charlie Goldsmith had the full quote.
The full quote from Zac Taylor on Jonah Williams, Jackson Carman and right tackle.— Charlie Goldsmith (@CharlieG__) April 30, 2023
Taylor mentioned Jonah Williams’ knee injury as something that could impact him over the summer. pic.twitter.com/C88YNXvltN
There were trade proposals from many analysts that had Cincinnati trading Williams during the draft, and without that coming to fruition, the Bengals will need to move forward with him on the roster and set to play an impactful role. It’s safe to think his injury recovery played a part in teams being hesitant to make a trade offer Cincinnati would seriously consider.
Both Taylor and offensive line coach Frank Pollack seem confident Williams will thrive through the transition.
“I’d love to coach Jonah, love to coach him. And there’s an old saying that this is a great game and a crazy business, and I hope we get to coach him. He’s a good football player. He’s got a bright future, and hopefully, it’s still here with the Bengals in 2023,” Pollack said earlier this offseason after the Bengals signed Brown.
The 6-foot-4 Williams was taken 11th in the 2019 NFL Draft. He missed his entire rookie season and has played 16 regular-season games in each of the last two years, playing 100% of the offensive snaps.
Williams has not always been the most durable, and his performance last year wasn’t what you’d hope from a left tackle. He ended last season with six penalties as well.
Here’s to hoping Williams fully recovers and becomes a solid starting right tackle for the team next season.