Cincinnati Bengals: Confidence in the offensive line takes a hit
The Cincinnati Bengals’ confidence in their offensive line was strong just a week ago. It has proven to be, however, Bitcoin-like volatile — Diamond hands my butt. This particular stock shows it will continue to take a hit every once in a while.
“Once in a while” arrives seemingly every time an offensive lineman makes headlines for being on the trade block or getting released. What many fans will have you believe is that they are confident in the direction of the o-line, however, this is often not the case as shares of BOLCONF (Bengals offensive line confidence) get sold every time a new lineman hits the market.
The latest example of this is offensive tackle Morgan Moses, formerly of the Washington Football Team, who was released a few days ago. Upon rumors of his availability via trade, BOLCONF stock began to decline. After his release, said stock plummeted. Just a few days prior, it was “hold, hold, diamond hands, to the moon!”
So, what gives?
The answer is simple.
Cincinnati Bengals fans’ confidence, or lack thereof, is coming through.
Last week, Riley Reiff was the answer at right tackle and a big improvement over Bobby Hart. Now, apparently, he can play anywhere along the line but maybe not at right tackle because we have yet to see him do it, as he played left tackle in Minnesota. Furthermore, perhaps not guard either, as he’s not a powerful run blocker. Well, that escalated quickly.
If the Bengals were to pursue Moses, Reiff could just slide in at guard. The problem there is that he has only played left tackle, so perhaps Moses could play guard instead but now we are getting into even more speculation. This is already the case with Reiff playing right tackle and Jackson Carman moving to right guard — We have not seen them do it. Apparently playing both tackle spots and both guard positions is all the same thing and requires no adjustment period or growing pains.
Then there is offensive line coach Frank Pollack, who makes his triumphant return to the Queen City. Now that Jim Turner is no longer here, Pollack will be able to get more, better from this group of o-linemen.
If this is so, and it is, why not give him a chance with the players the team has already invested in? Why continue to push for outside signings like Moses or Trai Turner?
- Fans do not believe in Pollack as much as they claim
- They still do not believe in this o-line room as much as they would like to.
- They do not trust the process as much as they would have you believe.
Either way, the OL confidence stock takes a hit.
Bengals fans are hoping that Reiff can play right tackle, Carman can play right guard, and Pollack can get more out of these guys than Turner could. They are also hoping that the team signs every offensive lineman that becomes available. But as the great Bengals philosopher Jake Liscow of the Locked on Bengals podcast said, “Hope is not a plan.”
Hope, however, remains a big part of the plan when it comes to this iteration of the offensive line. This is why the Bengals’ o-line confidence stock will continue its wild cryptocurrency-Esque fluctuation until the season begins.
Let’s just hope the Bengals got it right.
One thing we all know for sure is, this organization will always have “Diamond hands” no matter what.
How confident are you in the BOLCONF stock right now? Diamond hands or are you willing to sell all your shares for offensive linemen not currently on the roster?