Cincinnati Bengals Roster: The Long Shots


For the next five weeks not much will happen around the NFL, it’s kind of the dark time with nothing scheduled until training camps kick off. Most players will continue to train, prepare, and recover for the upcoming season. Currently NFL rosters are allowed to be at 90 players before they have to be carved down to 53 following the final preseason game.  That will leave 37 players looking for new jobs.

When you look at the Bengals roster there isn’t a lot of space to make it as an unknown guy. That doesn’t mean that by September there won’t be a player that gets onto this roster that no one thought would happen in April. Guys like Emmanual Lamur, Jayson DiManche, Vinney Rey, and last year Ryan Hewitt have proven that it’s not impossible, maybe a long shot, but not impossible.  When I say long shot I don’t mean guys that are 8th on the depth chart, it’s those guy like Hewitt that can play smart, and carve out a place on the roster.  Let’s take a look at the 2015 Bengals Long Shots.

S – Eric Dargan 5’11 212lbs

Erick Dargan (4) against the Florida State Seminoles in the 2015 Rose Bowl college football game at Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports ” width=”234″ height=”286″ /> January 1, 2015; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oregon Ducks defensive back Erick Dargan (4) against the Florida State Seminoles in the 2015 Rose Bowl college football game at Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Eric Dargan is your classic Bengals undrafted free agent pickup, solid college player, smart, instinctive, but maybe lacking a few physical or personality traits. What I’m sure caught the Bengals’ eyes was that Dargan excelled on all four special teams units while at Oregon, and that would be the role he would make onto the roster. The only major question is can they afford the roster spot?

CB – Troy Hill 5’10 182lbs

In mine and many others eyes Troy Hill should have been drafted, but when teams saw some character flaws to go along with a slight frame, Hill fell out of the draft.  Hill is feisty in coverage, and has great ball skills defending 18 passes last year. If he can have a solid camp and the Bengals keep 6 corners he could grab that last spot, he definitely has the look of a quality practice squad guy to develop. Does he remind you of another Bengals defensive guy? Vontaze Burfict, maybe? The only issue the Bengals might have is if he shows talent in training camp and preseason and they do try to move him to the practice squad, he could end up a waiver casualty and head to the 53-man roster elsewhere.

FB – Mark Wiesman 5’11 242

Oh man am I routing for this guy. I am picturing him getting his one carry vs the Steelers and steam rolling about five of them. Weisman ran for over 2500 yards during his time at Iowa, scoring 32 TD’s.  With the Bengals he will be making the switch to fullback where he won’t carry the ball much, if at all.

Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson showed how successful Jeremy Hill was running behind a fullback last year and could look to expand the position. Ryan Hewitt is still there guy but he can also be used at tight end if a third guy doesn’t emerge or injury peers early on there, which possibly leaves some fullback snaps for big Mark.

WR – Jake Kumerow 6’5 205

How could a guy like Jake Kumerow make it onto the roster you might be asking. Well the more I look, the more I see uncertainty at the back end of the receiver depth chart. Veteran Denarius Moore, 7th round pick Mario Alford, off injury James Wright, and with it time to cut loose Cobi Hamilton. I could see a spot for a player like Kumerow, who the Bengals showed a lot of interest in before singing him.

During his time at Wisconsin-Whitewater he caught 143 passes for 2,447 yards and 33 scores over a two-year span and was the Division III player of the year. I could see the final receiver depth chart shake out as: AJ Green, Marvin Jones, Mohamed Sanu, Brandon Tate, Danrius Moore/James Wright, and Jake Kumerow.

Next: Russell Wison in Bengals Stripes?