6 Bengals whose stock significantly rose in preseason game vs Cardinals

Bengals (Mandatory Credit: Albert Cesare-USA TODAY Sports)
Bengals (Mandatory Credit: Albert Cesare-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Mandatory Credit: Albert Cesare-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Albert Cesare-USA TODAY Sports /


Trent Taylor

Throughout training camp, there has been the question about who will be the fourth wide receiver on the depth chart. Trent Taylor played well enough to throw his name into the conversation. In the first quarter alone, Taylor had three catches for 64 yards. He finished the game with four receptions for 74 yards. The veteran receiver showed good chemistry with backup quarterback Jake Browning.

Taylor, a fifth-year pro, has been lost in the shuffle a bit regarding who will earn the title as WR4. But it is easy to understand why. Last year he only had two catches on three targets. But he also had a crucial two-point conversion against Kansas City to tie the AFC Championship game in the third quarter.

Perhaps most importantly for his roster ambitions, he averaged 7.4 yards on punt returns last year. He also returned kicks for an average of 17 yards per return in limited duties. As of now, Mike Thomas appears to have an edge in the WR4 competition. However, there are challengers like Kwamie Lassiter III, Kendric Pryor, and Trent Irwin. But now, we should include Taylor in those conversations moving forward.

Kendric Pryor

If you were not aware of Kendric Pryor already, now you know. Pryor, an undrafted free agent out of Nebraska, had an excellent game in his preseason opener. So seeing that he could showcase his abilities in game action was nice.

The first thing that the coaches are going to love is that he did the little things. When Pryor was called on to run block against edge defenders, he did so effectively. He was also deployed on punt coverage duties.

Then, of course, came the splash plays. Early in the second quarter, at a full sprint, Pryor was able to drag both feet and come down with an incredible catch from a fantastic on-the-run throw from Jake Browning.

Pryor’s work in the first half alone was enough to see his stock rise. But then he came back in the third quarter and had an incredible catch with multiple defenders draped all over him. Late in the fourth quarter, backup Drew Plitt threw a beautiful back shoulder throw pass in which Pryor adjusted and made an incredible one-handed catch.

And for the coup de gras, Pryor finished off the final drive with a stutter step move and flew right past the corner for what looked to be an easy pitch and catch for a touchdown on the last significant play of the game.

Pryor finished the game with four catches for 89 yards and a touchdown. His stock is definitely on the rise. Keeping him off the roster will be hard if he continues to play like this in the upcoming preseason games. Even more challenging to hide him on the practice squad.