Oct 20, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) catches a pass for a touchdown while being defended by Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick (27) during the third quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
The New York Jets come to town this Sunday, so Kirkpatrick will definitely have a nice opponent to go against. While the Jets don’t have an elite receiver by any means, they do have some quality players that gives Kirkpatrick a test. After this week, there are quite a few fast and crafty receivers to play against in the Dolphins, Ravens, Chargers, and Colts for example. They all have receivers that can play very well and every corner will have the be on their ‘A’ game. Not only that, but assuming the Bengals make the playoffs, there are many teams there that have quality receivers.
It’s apparent that the Bengals will draft a cornerback this upcoming draft, but the way Kirkpatrick plays will help dictate where the Bengals draft one. While the Bengals season does not fall with Hall, they still need a cornerback to step up. Kirkpatrick has the skillset to contribute, but the only way he can portray it is by being on the field. Some fans want the Bengals to trade for a cornerback, but they should allow Kirkpatrick to showcase his talents.
This is now Kirkpatrick’s job to lose. Expect some rookie mistakes here and there, as all cornerbacks struggle early in their career. But if Kirkpatrick plays well, the Bengals not only prove they are deep in-depth; but prove they have a future in Kirkpatrick.