The Bengals have seen plenty of movement at the defensive end position over the off-season. They lost key players in their rotation in Jonathan Fanene and Frostee Rucker. Losing both of those players is a bit of a blow to the Bengals as keeping one of them would have been ideal. The Bengals attempted to replace them with former first round picks, Jamaal Anderson and Derrick Harvey. If these two can finally live up to their potential, then the change at DE will not end up being so significant. Looking at the starters for the defensive end position remains the same from last season. Robert Geathers will be back again as well as Carlos Dunlap. Also in the fold will be Michael Johnson. Geathers is a solid player who is good at stopping the run from his position, but lacks the explosiveness to get after the quarterback on passing downs. On the other hand, Carlos Dunlap could wind up to be one of the most explosive defensive ends in the NFL if he can find a way to stay healthy throughout an entire NFL season. Michael Johnson says that he wants to start, but will have to show improvement in his technique to coaches before that could be a possibility. The state of the defensive end is up in the air. It could very well turn out to be vastly improved over 2011, but there is a lot that needs to be proven before it can be justified.
Tags: Afc AFC North Bengals Brandon Thompson Carlop Dunlap Cincinnati Bengals Devon Still Domata Peko Dre Kirkpatrick Geno Atkins Keith Rivers Michael Johnson Mike Zimmer Nate Clements NFL Pacman Jones Reggie Nelson Rey Maualuga Robert Sands Taylor Mays Thomas Howard