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Bengals 2023 Position Review: Special Teams

Let’s kick it. I’ll say kick it, and you’ll just kick it with a tasty groove.

Syndication: The Enquirer Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

From Evan McPherson to Charlie Jones, the Cincinnati Bengals have a lot of things to feel good about on special teams. They are young and they are talented, but there is one position that needs to be addressed.

Key Players

  • Evan McPherson
  • Brad Robbins
  • Cal Adomitis
  • Charlie Jones
  • Trayveon Williams

2023 Review

They call him Money Mac, but for my money, Evan McPherson is Steady Evy. In 2023, McPherson was perfect on extra points and all field goal attempts under 50 yards. He also got a touchback on 76.8% of his kickoffs, up 20% from a year ago.

You can count on him just like you can count on long snapper Cal Adomitis to get the ball where in the punter’s hands in a timely fashion. The punter, however, does not meet the same standard.

Brad Robbins ranked 31st in yards per punt which in a league of 32 is (checks notes) not good.

On the other end of things, rookie Charlie Jones showed that great potential as a punt returner, averaging 10.8 yards per return, including an 81-yard touchdown against the Baltimore Ravens.

2024 Outlook

McPherson has added consistency to his tool belt, which already included a knack for long bombs and last-second game-winners.

Darrin Simmons said he was looking for a returner who could bring the “fear of God” to opposing coaches and Jones has shown the potential to do just that.

Then there is the situation at punter.

Robbins will have a full off-season with the best special teams coach in the league who was, in his youth, a punter himself. Maybe he turns the corner, but the team cannot rely on that. Whether it be through the draft or free agency, I would expect someone to come in to compete. It might even be Drue Chrisman, who missed out on his chance due to a medical issue a year ago.