Cincinnati Bengals: 4 breakout candidates in Week 1 vs. Vikings
Bengals’ breakout candidates – Tee Higgins
The first offensive player to appear on the potential breakout list is Tee Higgins. It just feels like Higgins’ year to dominate.
He came on strong in the second half of last season, ending the season with 67 receptions, 908 receiving yards, and six receiving touchdowns. Cincinnati’s offense should be quite pass-heavy again this season with so many talented receivers and Joe Burrow distributing the ball.
Higgins could quite possibly be the Bengals’ top receiver this season and has the potential for an All-Pro type of season. In the future, Ja’Marr Chase should be the top receiving threat in this offense, but this could be Higgins’ year to carry the load.
Along with Higgins’ potential big season, Minnesota does not have a great secondary. Last season, the Vikings were 24th in the NFL allowing over 258 passing yards per game. Furthermore, the Vikings were 30th in the league surrendering 11.6 yards per completion. Really any passing defense stat you look at, Minnesota was towards the bottom.
In addition, the aging Vikings’ starting corner Patrick Peterson is coming off one of his worst seasons across his career. Peterson posted an unattractive PFF grade of 55.2 last season, which is probably why Arizona was okay finally parting ways with their long-time corner.
Lining up opposite of Peterson, Bashaud Breeland has been shaky throughout his career. He’s had a few solid seasons, but he has struggled at times. Minnesota’s cornerbacks have a lot of questions and uncertainty.
The Vikings’ potential porous secondary combined with Cincinnati’s heavy passing attack, gives Higgins a prime opportunity. Higgins could be the safest bet on the offense to deliver a monster game.
If the Bengals are to win their Week 1 contest, at least one of these players will need a breakout performance. One thing’s for sure, Cincinnati needs an all-around team performance to come out victorious in their season-opener.