PFF gives major respect to the Bengals’ wide receiver unit

Cincinnati Bengals, Tyler Boyd (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Cincinnati Bengals, Tyler Boyd (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

Pro Football Focus seems to like what the Cincinnati Bengals are brewing in their wide receiver room, as evidenced by their ranking of the unit.

Within the Queen City, there’s plenty of buzz surrounding the arsenal weapons at Joe Burrow’s disposal. Outside the confines of Cincinnati, however, the Bengals’ supporting cast for their new franchise quarterback has been overlooked. That is, until Pro Football Focus released their rankings of wide receiver units across the league.

The Bengals’ pass-catchers found themselves listed as the 10th best in the entire NFL. That gives them a commanding lead in the AFC North, with the Cleveland Browns being the closest divisional rivals in the rankings at the 18th slot.

PFF appears to think Tyler Boyd, who has single-handedly kept the Bengals’ passing attack viable at times, will benefit greatly from the return of A.J. Green and the addition of Tee Higgins,

"“Boyd has shown the ability to produce without great complements around him, and the prospect of having Green return and/or Higgins in the mix on the outside should excite Bengals fans.”"

The former second-round pick has eclipsed 1,000 yards receiving in each of the past two years. Considering the obstacles he’s had to overcome, such as ineffective offensive line play, less than ideal quarterback situations, and being the primary focus of opposing defensive coordinators, that’s quite the feat.

The situation Boyd is heading into for 2020 appears to be much more favorable than those that he’s encountered in the past, which suggests he could make an even bigger impact than he already has.

Don’t forget the back end of the depth chart

Boyd, Green, and Higgins alone offer plenty of potential at wide receiver but don’t forget about the rest of the room. Auden Tate, with his impeccable catch radius, is an outstanding red-zone target, standing at 6’5.

Not to mention, John Ross is in the fold as well. There’s no denying he hasn’t lived up to his draft billing yet, but he’s still the fastest man in the league and he’s shown flashes of greatness. Without so much pressure on him, he could thrive and turn into the star the Bengals thought he could be coming out of Washington.

The Bengals will have to prove it

While it’s nice to see Cincinnati garnering some respect from a well-respected network, the majority of the football world still doubts the talent on the roster. Look no further than ESPN’s ranking of offensive weapons for proof.

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If the Bengals want to begin earning the recognition they deserve, they’ll have to go beyond putting up numbers and start marking notches in the win column. With the position group looking stacked and the reigning Heisman now throwing to them, they’ll have every opportunity to do just that.