August 29, 2014

My two favorite back-ups stepping up…

I love Paul Brown…Stadium.  I guess that most fans feel this way about where their home team plays but Paul Brown Stadium isn’t like any of them…and training camp there isn’t a joke either.

So I dragged the family back to Cincy last weekend to visit the folks one more time before school starts and thought my oldest son and I should take a trek down to Paul Brown on Saturday to check out the scrimmage and how the team is doing in person.  The plan was to get downtown right at 1 o’clock so we could have plenty of time in the pro shop to buy expensive, pointless gifts that we can’t get back in North Carolina.  That didn’t happen.  This did…

I got to the parking lot and realized that my wife took all my cash (typical wife stuff) so we had to go find an ATM, grab some cash, and get back to the lot.  However, by the time our side quest was over, my partner in crime had fallen asleep.  So then I had to pick up 40 lbs of extra weight and lug it over to PBS, stroll through the Pro Shop, buy nothing, go grab a beer and sit down.  By the way, it was also hot.

Once the tired, crabby, hungry monster woke from his snoring slumber I was frightened how the rest of the afternoon would turn out.  Lucky for me, it only took a Gatorade, a large bowl of popcorn and a promise to get him something in the Pro Shop after practice was over.  (He got cars!)

Once the beast was tamed it was actually time to watch the scrimmage.  Being as I had a 3 ½ year old to entertain in addition to watching the practice I could only focus on so many things, so I focused on my favorite part of the team…offense.

The first thing I focused on was WR.  Just as everyone has been writing, it seems that Tate and Binns are battling it out for WR2.  The depth chart that just came out suggests that Tate is in the lead but I thought that Binns looked better on that day.  That battle seems to be the most intriguing thing about the wide outs but that wasn’t what caught my attention.  What I saw was a bunch of this…

and this…

That’s one of my favorite Bengals, “Baby Hawk” lined up next to our WR1 A.J. Green.  Why is this so important to me?  It’s because they are treating Hawkins as the starting slot receiver ahead of Jordan Shipley.  Now don’t get me wrong, I think very highly of number 11, but when you have such a dynamic and consistently reliable player like Hawkins on the roster, give him a chance.  It’s a smart move to let Shipley rest a little bit more and give “Baby Hawk” that starting role…for now.  I’m sure  a lot of Shipley fans are going to expect Hawkins to give up his starting job to Shipley once Jordan is really at 100% again, but don’t think he’ll part with it so easily.  I’m expecting Hawkins to put up some nice numbers in the preseason, maybe even enough that he’ll get more playing time then a lot of people will think.  Oh, and he’s returning punts too…and they look really good.

Here’s some updates that you already knew about.

Dalton looks good…

Green looks good…

 

the Ben-gals ALWAYS look good…

and BJGE looks good too.

BJGE is a breath of fresh air that masks the greedy ball-hogging/fumbling stench that was left behind.  The sad part of our running game, that a lot of Bengals fans will agree with, is the injury of Bernard Scott.  Now I might get crucified for this but I’m not the biggest Scott fan.  I know he’s fast and cuts well but he’s never had that wow factor, so why should he split the carries with the “Law Firm” instead of the other go-to-guy that has saved our butts so many times…Brian Leonard.  I think the back-up job is Leonard’s to lose.  This guy has that wow factor.  He’s saved so many 3rd and longs that I can’t count.  Now that Leonard is going to be splitting the carries with Green-Ellis for the pre-season I think it’s the perfect opportunity to take the job.  But can he do it?

So there it is.  Hawkins and Leonard are ready and prepped.  I’ll be watching them Friday night with excited eyes to see if they can step up to the plate.  Anyone with me?  Just gotta say, “Shipley and Scott…you guys better get healthy soon and hope that you’re job is available when you get back, ’cause those guys won’t be saving a spot for you.”

P.S.  Geno Atkins signed my hat!  The guy standing next to us didn’t know which player it was and told his kid not to get his signature because he was a nobody.  Jokes on you dude!

Comments

  1. Number 1 Fan says:

    Solid write up and good snag on the Atkins sig.

  2. Sean says:

    dude im so jealous of you!!!! Geno atkins is my favorite player! nobody my ass!!!!