Player News - Bengals

Date: Team: Pos:

Bengals second-year TE Tyler Kroft is seeing expanded first-team reps with Tyler Eifert (ankle) on the shelf.

As Eifert's Week 1 status is in doubt, it's possible Kroft will open the season as Cincinnati's starting tight end. The 85th overall pick in last year's draft, Kroft drew Zach Ertz comparisons coming out of Rutgers but spent most of his rookie campaign on the line blocking. Kroft is a name to keep in mind for early-season tight end streamers and DFS players at or near minimum cost.
Source: bengals.com
May 25 - 9:24 PM

Bengals signed No. 122 overall pick NT Andrew Billings to a four-year contract.

Billings had some Day 1 projections, but size concerns and a two-down skill set pushed him to the fourth round. He should see most of his rookie-year snaps as a run stopper behind Geno Atkins and Domata Peko. First-round CB William Jackson III is Cincinnati's only unsigned pick.
May 25 - 5:30 PM

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports Bengals TE Ryan Hewitt is recovering from a "minor, non-football procedure."

It sounds like Hewitt will be out for OTAs, but should be ready in time for training camp. An H-back-type blocker, Hewitt can play in-line tight end and fullback.
May 25 - 2:59 PM

Former NFL head team physician David Chao reports Tyler Eifert's ankle surgery requires 3-4 months recovery.

Chao works for Sirius XM NFL Radio and was an NFL head team physician for 17 years. He knows what he's talking about. Eifert is undergoing surgery on Wednesday to repair a "loose ligament" in his ankle, and according to Chao, Eifert is "in jeopardy" for the start of the season. Eifert's recovery is going to have to go as smoothly as possible for him not to miss regular-season action.
May 25 - 9:58 AM

A source told ESPN's Adam Schefter that Tyler Eifert "could miss the first couple of games of the season" following Wednesday's ankle surgery.

Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, Eifert is undergoing surgery to "repair a loose ligament on the side of his foot," and the "worst-case scenario" is Eifert "to be out the first few games" of the season. Eifert initially injured his ankle in the Pro Bowl, and it's been giving him fits ever since. It may be around midseason before Eifert truly makes an impact since he'll miss the entire offseason.
May 25 - 8:35 AM

ESPN's Adam Schefter confirms Tyler Eifert (ankle surgery) is "in jeopardy" for Week 1.

Eifert would basically have to have no snags in his rehab to be ready, and "no snags" has never been Eifert's health M.O. Eifert will undoubtedly miss the entire preseason, and likely spend the majority of camp on the active/PUP list. Barring a major setback, he should be able to avoid reserve/PUP, which would cost him six games.
May 24 - 2:03 PM

The Cincinnati Enquirer's Jim Owczarski reports Tyler Eifert is expected to miss three months following a "minimal procedure" on his ankle.

Eifert originally suffered the injury at the Pro Bowl. It was thought at the time he was just dealing with a sprain, but he is still having problems nearly four months removed from the initial injury. The three-month timetable means he will almost certainly miss the entire preseason, and it is not a given he will be ready for Week 1. Already set to see a monster target share before this news, A.J. Green could set a career-high in targets.
May 24 - 1:07 PM

Bengals OC Ken Zampese expects second-round WR Tyler Boyd to open this season in the slot.

"Struck me as a guy that can play slot early," Zampese said. "He’s very familiar with where the bodies are coming from down there." Boyd has only Brandon LaFell to compete with for snaps behind A.J. Green, but projects for a low-upside possession role. Boyd will likely start out as the No. 4 pass-game option.
May 21 - 2:37 PM

Bengals signed fifth-round OG Christian Westerman to a four-year contract.

Westerman has NFL-level strength, but isn't an elite athlete. He's also a bit undersized at 6-foot-3, 298 pounds. He does have long arms for an interior lineman (33 1/2"), and enormous hands (11 7/8"). Westerman could eventually end up at center, where Bengals C Russell Bodine has struggled.
May 17 - 2:06 PM

Bengals signed FS Shawn Williams to a four-year extension through 2020.

A third-round pick in 2013, Williams has only started four games in three seasons, but his presence was a big factor in the decision to let Reggie Nelson walk. Williams is expected to open the season as the starter at free safety, and a big year likely would have earned him a hefty payday next spring. Cincinnati's decision to lock him up now could look like a savvy move this time next year.
May 17 - 9:37 AM

Bengals signed second-round WR Tyler Boyd to a four-year contract.

The 55th overall pick in the draft, Boyd is a smooth-and-savvy possession receiver prospect who will compete for snaps right away with Brandon LaFell. A.J. Green, Tyler Eifert, and perhaps Gio Bernard should all out-target Boyd in 2016, rendering him an uninspiring selection in re-draft fantasy leagues.
May 16 - 3:48 PM

Bengals signed UCLA OL Alex Redmond.

Redmond (6’5, 294) could have used another year of seasoning, but declared for the NFL draft after he himself was declared academically ineligible. While the athletic Redmond can block in space, there are major concerns that his lack of strength will lead to getting pushed around in the NFL prior to getting prematurely shoved out of it. Pro Football Focus has called Redmond "undersized and totally unrefined." He's the quintessential practice squad candidate.
May 13 - 1:58 PM

Bengals signed Utah LB Gionni Paul.

Paul (5’10, 231) is an extreme longshot lacking in both size and speed (4.97 forty at Utah's Pro Day). For comparison sake, consider the case of Arizona LB Scooby Wright, the posterboy for diminutive linebackers in this class who fell to the Browns at the end of RD. 7. Wright was far more productive than Paul when on the field and is also two inches taller, 10 pounds heavier and a tenth of a second faster in the forty.
May 13 - 1:49 PM

Bengals signed third-round LB Nick Vigil to a four-year contract.

Vigil was extremely productive in the Mountain West before showing only average athleticism at the Combine. A high-motor player, Vigil doesn't embarrass himself in coverage. Most of his rookie snaps should come on special teams, but a role on defense is a real possibility down the line.
May 10 - 4:16 PM

Bengals offensive line coach Paul Alexander said sophomore Jake Fisher is "getting work at all five spots."

In line to be the team's backup at right tackle, Fisher saw some work at guard last season and is taking snaps at center this year. "He’s such a great athlete," Alexander said. "Typically centers aren’t that tall, but he’s certainly on the high end of the athleticism." One of the most versatile players on the roster, Fisher saw time at H-back last season, hauling in one of his five targets for 31 yards. He could struggle to get into the starting lineup, but Fisher will likely see snaps at multiple positions again this year.
Source: bengals.com
May 9 - 8:11 PM


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