Knowing definitively which Cincinnati Bengals will play well and who won’t can be a crapshoot sometimes. Some Bengals we know will have a good season but many players can be inconsistent, even after a couple of good seasons.
Let’s take a look at three members of the 2021 Bengals who could be setting us up for disappointment this year.
Bengals Who Could Disappoint in 2021
3. Ja’Marr Chase – Wide Receiver
Most rookies shouldn’t have major expectations on them right away, unless they’re a first-round pick, especially a top-five pick. Ja’Marr Chase has plenty of pros and cons entering his rookie season with the biggest pro being that he won a national title with Joe Burrow at LSU in 2019.
Chase accumulated nearly 1,800 receiving yards and 20 touchdowns in their 2019 championship campaign. He then opted out in 2020 due to Covid, presumably to stay safe and not ruin his NFL chances.
When the draft came around in 2021 people were wondering if Chase should be a high pick with him not playing for a year. The Bengals decided to take the risk, hoping that Burrow and Chase could recreate the magic they had at LSU. After Week 2 against Washington, it was clear Chase was having a dropping issue, which is certainly fixable, but still worrisome.
This could be a side effect of having sat for a year. Naturally, he’ll have game time rust that’ll need to be shaken off. This might be a larger issue; he could be the next Darius Heyward-Bey, who was a top draft pick with high hopes only to crumble at the professional level.
This also could be a result of not playing with Burrow. Brandon Allen won’t have the same timing and precision that Burrow will, so it might be as simple as that.
Don’t forget the Bengals have two good receivers as well in Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd, who will be taking targets away from Chase. All of these factors could lead to a disappointing showing in 2021.