3. Akeem Davis-Gaither
This is a big season for Akeem Davis-Gaither. He is coming off a season-ending injury but has the chance to be a massive piece to the Bengals’ defense this season and fill a void they did not have last year.
Davis-Gaither is a more modern-day linebacker which favors his long-term game and the team. He’s very athletic and is effective in coverage, especially across the middle of the field.
Davis-Gaither will play a vital role on the defense alongside Logan Wilson, Germaine Pratt, and rotational linebackers like Markus Bailey and Joe Bachie who both overachieved when called upon last season.
Throughout Gaithers’ first two seasons in the NFL, he has logged 58 tackles, one forced fumble, and one interception. He only appeared in seven games last year and was a fourth-round selection out of Appalachian State, so he didn’t see significant playing time his rookie year. The talented product is heading into year three, and Cincinnati is very fond of his game.
Being a 6’2″, 228-pound athlete allows him to be used in different schemes for defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo. Akeem Davis-Gaither may not be a household name just yet; he could be an instrumental player for the Bengals’ continued success in 2022.