Looking to run it back again this season, the Cincinnati Bengals will need to keep their young linebacking crew healthy, starting with Logan Wilson, who calls the plays on the field. Headed into year three, what are the expectations for Wilson?
After recovering from off-season shoulder surgery, Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Logan Wilson looks ready to have another impactful year as he enters training camp. In 2021, Wilson played in 13 games and showed he could be an elite linebacker; he made 100 tackles, one sack, one forced fumble, and intercepted four passes during the season.
Wilson made his presence felt last year.
Drafted in the third round from the University of Wyoming, Wilson seemed to fit the need the Bengals desperately were looking for in a linebacker. In his first year, he proved to be a core special teams player and worked himself into the linebacking rotation picking off two interceptions and a sack that season. Last year, he proved he could be a rock-solid every-down linebacker while running the defense.
In the Week 13 game against the Chargers, Wilson went down while covering a punt. He was carted off the field, leaving fans extremely nervous that he would be lost for the season. However, Wilson had other plans returning in Week 17 against the Kansas City Chiefs.
Wilson played with a torn Labrum with a sling that affected his range of motion. He showed outstanding mental toughness and made his presence known in the middle of the field to help lead his team to a victory.
Wilson showed his toughness throughout the playoffs.
The Bengals captured their playoff win against the Raiders at home last season, which ended a 31-year playoff drought. Wilson once again played limited but still had nine solo tackles and three assists during the game. The following week, he turned heads again by making a key interception to set up the game-winning field goal against the Titians, which sent them to Kansas City for the AFC Title.
During Super Bowl LVI in Los Angeles, Wilson was called for a pass inference call which allowed the Rams to have a new set of downs and ultimately led to the game-winning touchdown. When you go back and look at that play on tape, you see it was a controversial call. Many fans like myself were upset about the penalty, but Wilson chose to look at it differently.
During his press conference, Wilson talked about the officiating at the end of Super Bowl LVI, saying, “Yeah, but there’s nothing I could do about it,” Wilson said. “I have people ask me all the time, how did you respond to that? It’s like, it’s a thing that’s out of your control. You can’t do anything about it. That’s just the mentality. You have to go in the next play and try to get a stop, and we failed to do so.
“I feel like that’s how I felt like I played it. I guess the only other thing I could have done is not touch him. But it’s also a physical game, and you have to be able to put your hands on people within that five-yard zone.”
“You gotta put yourselves in the referee’s shoes, too.” Said it’s tough to make those split-second decisions on the world’s biggest stage.”
Bengals Roster: What should fans expect from Logan Wilson in 2022?
A healthy and more experienced Wison will significantly impact in year three. Playing in some of the biggest games and knowing the scheme allows him to play much faster, giving him the confidence to lead this defense again.
Defensive Coordinator Lou Anarumo likes to stay in subpar packages when teams throw a lot. Keeping a skilled linebacker like Wilson out on all three downs is a huge advantage. He has shown that he can pattern read, match up in coverage, and make tackles in the middle of the field. He has proven time and time again that he can come up with the big interceptions.
Wilson has the right mindset going into the season. “The only two things you can control in your life are your attitude and your effort. If you don’t have a good attitude, your effort is gonna be low, but if you have a better attitude about it and you have eye effort to the ball, usually good things happen, so it’s just something I’ve always prided myself on throughout my whole athletic career in general always playing hard.”
Look for Wilson to be back playing at an elite level now that he is injury-free and ready to get back at it. Expectations for this team will be set high, so it will be up to experienced players like Wilson to lead the way. Veterans report to Bengal training camp on July 26.