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8 winners and 5 losers in Bengals’ preseason-opening loss vs. Packers

It wasn’t pretty, but many new and/or young faces made big-time impressions on Friday night versus the Packers.

The Cincinnati Bengals finally took the field for real (sort of) on Friday night, with their 2023 debut at Paycor Stadium. They took the loss, and there were lessons learned, but familiar preseason inconsistency plagued the team.

Here are the best and worst performers of the Bengals’ preseason Week 1 loss to the Packers.


Andrei Iosivas:

With many of the Bengals’ receivers resting, Iosivas got a lot of early work. He built upon his training camp buzz with a couple of nice early grabs, showcasing both his size and strong hands.

The highlight was a third-quarter grab that went for 20 yards that also tacked on another 15 with a roughing the passer penalty on the play. He finished as the team’s leading receiver with four catches for 50 yards.

Evan McPherson:

On the Bengals’ telecast, Duke Tobin made a comment on why the Bengals only have one kicker in camp. McPherson hit his extra points in the first half, as well as four total field goals—one being a 51-yard bomb right down Broadway.

Tanner Hudson:

With many tight ends also resting, Hudson continued his training camp momentum as a nice, big outlet for Jake Browning. He had a couple of early catches and, as Mike Watts noted on the telecast, the team is enamored with his receiving ability from the position.

Unfortunately, Hudson left the game early with a concussion but finished with four grabs for 29 yards in two quarters of work.

Chris Evans:

The third-year back needs to have a big summer. As Tobin noted in the booth during the first half, they know how good of a receiver Evans is, but it is the other two facets in which they want to see more from No. 25.

Well, from a running standpoint, he showed off with a big gallop in the first half. When adding in a nice 28-yard kickoff return, he’s not going away quietly, that’s for sure.

Jordan Battle:

The rookie safety was flying all over the field on Friday night. His first tackle was a big hit on a minimal gain, then he added in a tackle-for-loss. A nice first impression on limited snaps for the former Crimson Tide defender.

Dax Hill:

The 2022 first-round selection was one of the few true starters to play this week, and while in for just one series, he made his presence known. Jordan Love attempted a deep pass to Christian Watson, and Hill flew in from his safety position to knock the ball away.

Tycen Anderson:

Everybody had their eyes on the three new safeties going into this one, but the forgotten man in the group had a huge night. Anderson had two first interceptions, with one being of the pick-six variety. A huge night for the second-year safety out of Toledo.

Domenique Davis:

The unheralded hero of the Anderson pick-six was Davis, who applied interior pressure to force the issue. Later in the fourth quarter, Davis was Johnny-on-the-spot with a fumble recovery off of a sack/forced fumble. A nice night for the former USFL’er.


Sidney Jones:

The veteran corner has a chance for a renaissance opportunity under Lou Anarumo in Cincinnati, but it was a rough Bengals debut for No. 24. He was in position (or maybe a step behind) on two big plays but had the chance to break up passes and didn’t. One was Love’s first touchdown of the game.

Charlie Jones:

Look, the sky’s the limit for this guy. We know he was playing with backup quarterbacks and is coming off of a shoulder issue, but it was tough sledding for No. 15 Friday night.

On offense, Jones had just two catches for 11 yards, while only notching seven yards on two punt returns. It wasn’t also so much that Jones played poorly either, but rather that his fellow receiver draftee, Iosivas, had a quality night. Unfortunately, it felt like a lot of things outside of Jones’ control led to the lackluster evening.

Drue Chrisman:

There’s nothing worse than losing ground in your roster battle because of health facets out of one’s control. Chrisman has been a fan favorite—particularly this offseason with his amazing work in delivering food to the less fortunate around downtown Cincinnati.

He’s been dealing with a health issue that’s forced him into the hospital, but Brad Robbins showcased his vaunted hangtime on punts. The rookie has the inside track on the punting job, particularly with some impressive boots on the night.

Jake Browning and Trevor Siemian:

Both quarterbacks struggled on Friday. The offense mustered just four field goals, no touchdowns, and the signal-callers threw two interceptions. Browning was more impressive than Siemian, but that wasn’t saying much, as the consistency just wasn’t there tonight.