Scouting the enemy: Bengals preseason Week 2 chat with GMEN HQ

Jonah Williams, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jonah Williams, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /

In anticipation of the Cincinnati Bengals’ upcoming preseason game with the New York Giants, we sat down with Braulio Perez, the expert for GMenHQ, FanSided’s Giants site. Braulio gave us the inside scoop on the Bengals’ Sunday night opponent.

Everything you need to know about our upcoming foe is below.

1. How can we expect this year’s Giants offense to look different under new head coach Brian Daboll? 

There’s definitely going to be a lot more excitement surrounding the playmakers. One of the biggest things to keep an eye on will be the involvement of Saquon Barkley in the passing game. After his impressive rookie season, we’ve seen his receptions go way down. However, Daboll knows how electric Barkley is, and we expect offensive coordinator Mike Kafka to feature him a bunch in 2022 in the aerial attack.

2. With James Bradberry now playing in Philadelphia, the secondary doesn’t have too many nationally-known names. Who are the candidates to be the Giants’ starting defensive backs? 

Adoree’ Jackson has the CB1 job locked up, as his growth has been fantastic to see. Darnay Holmes has been a standout in training camp, with him grabbing the slot corner job. At CB2, though, Aaron Robinson is coming off a nightmare showing in the first preseason game vs. the Patriots. Fans are worried about his play and they’re calling for [GM] Joe Schoen to go out and sign a veteran CB free agent.

3. The offensive line has been a problem for years. Drafting Alabama’s Evan Neal in the first round of this year’s draft should plug the hole at right tackle, and Andrew Thomas is solid on the left side, but are there concerns about the interior offensive line spots?  

GM Joe Schoen made a splash in bringing in Mark Glowinski and Jon Felicano this offseason. Glowinski at right guard and Felicano at center is a major upgrade. Shane Lemieux will man the LG position, but he’s got to stay healthy. Unfortunately, Lemieux suffered a toe injury vs. New England and his status for Week 1 is totally up in the air. Injuries will consistently be a concern for this unit.

4. What are the early returns on #5 overall pick Kayvon Thibodeaux? Is he going to solve the pass rush issues?

There’s plenty of buzz around Thibodeaux and rightfully so.  After battling a hip injury earlier in the offseason, he’s bounced back and looked sharp at camp. We’ll see what kind of impact he has against the Bengals, but for the regular season, I’m predicting him to finish the year with an impressive 11.5 sacks – breaking Azeez Ojulari’s record. This kid is the real deal.

5. Give us a couple of lesser-known names who are likely to play their way into a role on the team with a strong preseason. 

Definitely wide receiver Collin Johnson. He impressed against the Pats, leading the team with seven receptions. He did have a fumble, but with the uncertainty of Darius Slayton’s future with the G-Men, Johnson could very well end up making the 53-man roster. The same could be said for rookie safety Yusuf Corker. He’s been turning heads at camp. Corker signed with the Giants as an undrafted free agent, giving fans even more reason to root for this underdog to suit up come Week 1.

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The Bengals and Giants game kicks off on Sunday night at 7 EST.