Bengals insiders don’t believe team will address WR in free agency
The Cincinnati Bengals are going to add talent to the wide receiver position in some way, shape, or form this offseason. While the club has a trio of talented pass catchers in Tee Higgins, Tyler Boyd, and Auden Tate, the frequency that Zac Taylor utilizes five-wide formations in his offense and the lack of top-end speed amongst the unit demands that a burner be added.
The potential of a speedster taking the top off of an opposing defense for Joe Burrow to exploit is just too intriguing to pass up on. Just don’t expect such a player to be added in free agency, despite analysts and fans alike calling for the signing of a guy like Curtis Samuel or Kenny Golladay.
At least, that’s the point Bengals insiders are trying to get across to WhoDey Nation. In the latest Bengals Booth Podcast, both broadcaster Dave Lapham and senior writer Geoff Hobson don’t believe the open market is where Cincinnati will find its solution to the speed problem.
In response to a question about whether the Bengals would address wide receiver in the draft or free agency, both were quick to discourage the thought of spending money at the position, preferring the front office opts to secure their own big free agents (Carl Lawson and William Jackson III) or sign a top tier offensive lineman (Joe Thuney or Brandon Scherff).
"“I think they’re definitely going to have to address the [wide receiver] position in the draft.” -Dave Lapham"
It’s difficult to argue against their logic, especially considering how the Super Bowl played out. The top two teams in the league battled that game out in the trenches, not on the perimeter.
The draft offers the Bengals good speed WR options
If the franchise that calls Paul Brown Stadium home indeed pours their free-agent budget into re-signing their own high profile players and nabbing a big-fish offensive lineman off the market, the upcoming draft class offers plenty of options in the way of adding speed.
The marquee name being mentioned is Anthony Schwartz, who is quite literally a track star. There are some who believe he could even challenge the 40-yard-dash record that John Ross currently holds.
Beyond him, under-the-radar type players such as Chatarius Atwell, Marquez Stevenson, Austin Watkins, and Tamorrion Taylor could all add great value in the speed department. The best part? All are projected to go in the middle to late rounds, freeing Cincinnati up to target other positions of need first.
No matter how free agency plays out, the Bengals should be able to get the speed they need at wide receiver by the time late April rolls around. For fans hoping to see an offense that allows Burrow to show off his deep ball accuracy that he made famous at LSU, this fact should be music to their ears.