As the final preseason games wind down this weekend, teams are finalizing their rosters for the regular season. The Cincinnati Bengals have a number of tough decisions on the horizon, as many crowded position groups will force some talented players out the door.
On this week's Inside The Jungle, Nick Seuberling, Anthony Cosenza and Scott Bantel broke down the construction of the team's final roster options and their idea on how it looks. Will the versatility of some players open up things for deeper position groups? Will there be some surprises?
Enjoy a partial transcription below and the audio clip on the group's take. You can join our show every Wednesday night live at 9 p.m. EST here at Cincy Jungle, where we take your calls on the air! If you're unable to join us live, you can download our app in the Google Play and iTunes stores.
NS: Let's start with the quarterbacks, guys. AC -- do they keep two again this year?
AC: Yes, I think they do. They're slowly gaining more faith in (AJ) McCarron, especially after last week, so, yes, I think they keep just two. I think it's Dalton and McCarron.
NS: Scott, I'm sure you agree?
SB: Yep. Agreed.
NS: Okay, let's move on to running back. You know, AC, you teased it a little earlier with Giovani Bernard--you think he's a lock to make it, right?
AC: Yeah. I think you've got three locks in (Jeremy) Hill, (Giovani) Bernard, and (Rex) Burkhead. The thing is, Burkhead might also count as a wide receiver. If you go five wide receivers instead of six, maybe you go heavier at running back. So, if you do that, and you use Burkhead as kind of the "slash" guy, do you keep five backs? Is it (Cedric) Peerman and (James) Wilder? (Terrell) Watson and Peerman? I think they keep five here with the top three and Peerman and Wilder.
NS: So you're going deep there.
SB: I'm going to go with four, like they normally do. I agree with AC on the top three, Hill, Bernard and Burkhead. The more I think about it and the more I watch in the preseason, I think Peerman makes it. One of the things that stuck out watching the broadcast on Saturday, was Duke Tobin was in the booth with the announcers and he was talking about how much they value Peerman and need him on special teams and that just tells me he makes it. He talked about Peerman's influence on the team and what he means to them. Wilder, they signed him to a futures contract, but I think he gets cut and picked up somewhere and I think Watson ends up on the Practice Squad.
NS: Okay. I'm going to go ahead and agree with you, Scott. I'm going to go with four and it being Hill, Bernard, Burkhead and Peerman. With Peerman, you cannot underestimate his value on special teams, as I'm a special teams nerd. Would I like to keep both Watson and Wilder? Absolutely. But, there are only so many guys you can keep, so I'm sticking with four, and it's going to be the same four from last season.
Listen to the rest of our 53-man roster picks on offense here: