Cincinnati Bengals: Running Back Race
Sep 22, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals running back Giovani Bernard (25) runs the ball for a touchdown during the first quarter against the Green Bay Packers at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
The race for the final running back spots are heating up. There are 2 people that we can almost gaurentee will be in stripes come Week 1, Giovani Bernard and Jeremy Hill. Who will fill the rest of the Bengals depth at running back?
Giovani Bernard has a good year, not a great year. He had some spectacular plays and he should grow into his top spot. He should be running behind a familiar face in Russell Bodine and that could ultimately push him into a 1,000 year season.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis was the main go to running back for the past 2 years. He had 220 carries and 756 yards last year on the ground and he had just under 1,100 yards in 2012. He went from being the primary running back, to splitting carries, to maybe not even making the roster, although the last depth chart had him listed second so his position may be solidified, for now.
Jeremy Hill was drafted out of LSU and is expected to take over as the number 2 running back with Giovani Bernard expected to take over the number 1 spot, but the question is when? Green-Ellis is listed a number 2 on the depth chart behind Giovani Bernard.
Rex Burkhead was drafted in the late rounds of the 2013 draft. He is out of Nebraska and so far this season looks like a possible option to be a last man in, if he continues to show promise in the preseason. He was listed number 4 on the depth chart and was never used, but is a hard worker.
Cedric Peerman might be fighting for his spot. Last year, he was the number 3 running back and with BenJarvus Green-Ellis and Rex Burkhead still in the mix one of the three will be the odd man out.
The other issue for these three is that unlike last year, the Bengals have a true full back, and no it is not Domata Peko. Ryan Hewitt will be taking over the role and of course a roster position.
I expect the Cincinnati Bengals to carry, at most, 4 running backs into the season. The only questions remaining is who will make the cut and who will be the odd man out?