May 29, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Jordan Campbell during organized team activities at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Players like Brandon Tate, Daniel Herron, and Dane Sanzenbacher have really emerged and made their argument to be included on the final roster. However, the player that has surprised me the most thus far is Jordan Campbell, not because of what he has done, but because of the pure silence that is surrounding him. Campbell has barely appeared in any of the preseason performances and has only managed to slide into a few screen-shots of HBO’s Hard Knocks.
Everyone knew that because of the competition level at New Mexico-Highlands his phenomenal success would have to be taken with a grain of salt, but the raw talent is clearly there. The early release of three Bengals, one being Aaron Maybin, is very telling. Keeping Campbell off of tape is key if the Bengals want to squirrel away his talent on the practice squad without the risk of another team snagging the young linebacker.
It would be curious if Head Coach Marvin Lewis wasn’t using old relationships with the Hard Knock’s crew in regards to Campbell (and perhaps a few other players) in order to keep several gems hidden in plain sight.
Getting coverage of training camp is difficult in New Zealand, especially with full time work and the time difference, but so far I have been most impressed during the last two preseason games with Josh Johnson. In the week one game against Atlanta, he showed some legitimate skills both through the air and using his feet. He has decent speed for a QB and could be useful for the Bengals in exotic offensive sets.
Couple that with Gio in the back field, AJ out wide and a two tight end set with Gresham and Eifert and it could cause a lot of defenses problems.
In the Cincinnati Bengals locker room, Georgia Bulldogs rookie Shawn Williams was welcomed by six other players from his alma mater. Geno Atkins, Robert Geathers, A.J. Green, Clint Boling, Orson Charles, and Dennis Rolland. All came from the same college as the young inspired rookie safety. All share a sense of accomplishment amongst one another. All remain hopeful the young rookie will somehow find a way to not only make the final 53 man roster, but become an impact player at his strong safety position.
We first got a look at what Shawn can bring to the table during the Bengals Oklahoma drills during the first full contact practices when he threw rookie receiver Roy Roundtree out of the way and tackled Giovani Bernard for a loss behind the markers. Showing his ability to make tackles in the flats. Something the Bengals are concentrating on this year. He also had two interceptions the week of practices before the Titans game when he lead the team with ten tackles. A known special teams veteran at Georgia, that gives the Bengals coaches another way to get him on the field early and often in 2013.