Overshadowed by the debut of John Ross and the firing of Ken Zampese, Bengals fans have seemingly forgotten that Tyler Boyd was a healthy scratch in Week 2’s loss to the Houston Texans. What happened for the second-year receiver to not be active for Thursday night’s prime time game?
Caught up in the hype of John Ross‘ debut and the total disgust of how the Bengals played against Houston, I forgot that Tyler Boyd did not play. Once I sat back, got some food and started watching some Marvel movies, it dawned on me.
Why was Boyd benched? A healthy scratch? In all of my time as a Bengals fan, I can’t really remember when such a young player was benched and there was no reasoning why. It struck me as very odd why Marvin Lewis simply stated he was not benched for health reasons as previously reported.
And, furthermore, that, “I can only suit up so many players.” Interesting.
Boyd was a vital piece to the offense last season. Especially, when A.J. Green went down. He caught 54 receptions for 603 yards and really showed flashes of being a staple in the offense. So, when the Bengals head out to play Houston with no Boyd, I can’t sit back and just accept that answer from Lewis.
After such an offensively bad start to the season against Baltimore, one would think Cincinnati would bring out every offensive weapon they had and go to war with Houston whose top two corners were out I might add.
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It’s as if Lewis gave Zampese the keys to the car and said don’t take it out of first gear. However, the way Zampese called plays, completely eliminating Green in the second half and benching Ross, I guess he just decided to leave the car in the driveway.
The Real Deal?
Now, perhaps I’m reading too far into this. It’s possible that Boyd violated a team rule or something like that, and he was benched as a consequence. Lewis did the classy thing and did not talk about it with the media. They just handled it within the organization. Very possible, given how Lewis behaves with his players. But, Cincinnati is 0-2 and facing a very tough Week 3 opponent. They’ve just made a coaching change. So, everything looks worse than it is at this moment.
Boyd should be dressed and ready to go next week, I assume. New Bengals’ offensive coordinator, Bill Lazor, should be able to have all of his weapons at his disposable in Green Bay. However, how much of an impact Boyd could have remains to be seen this season. After only catching one pass in Week 1, it doesn’t allow for belief in a big impact.
However, the Bengals are entering a statement game. The Packers are a tough team, but certainly beatable. Cincinnati’s defense is good enough to hold Rodgers in check. So, once again, all eyes will be on the offense. Hopefully, Boyd and Ross will be on the field and this benching of young players doesn’t continue.