3 Bengals rookies who must play more in Week 2 vs. Ravens (and who they should replace)

  • Why was Chase Brown inactive?
  • Can we see more Myles Murphy, please?
  • Get Jordan Battle more involved!
Cincinnati Bengals v Washington Commanders
Cincinnati Bengals v Washington Commanders / Michael Owens/GettyImages
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Jordan Battle (No replacement)

Surprisingly, Battle actually played more than the two rookies listed above him, it's just that 25 of the 26 snaps he played were on special teams, only seeing one play on defense. He was easily the most impressive rookie (aside from Andrei Iosivas) in preseason and comes from a school that is known for producing good defensive backs. Minkah Fitzpatrick, Patrick Surtain II, Trevon Diggs, Marlon Humphrey, and Eddie Jackson are just a few of the prominent defensive backs that have come from Alabama in recent years.

The problem is I'm not sure who he should or even could replace, as I feel like both starting safeties played fairly well in week one. Dax Hill, of course, notched his first career interception and has looked much more accustomed to the game in general than he did in his rookie season.

While he had a startingly low PFF grade, I felt that Nick Scott didn't play all that badly. His coverage leaves a bit to be desired, but it felt like he was all over the field, and the numbers back that up as he finished with 11 combined tackles, tied alongside Germaine Pratt for the most in the game.

I don't think Battle should outright replace either of them heading into Week 2, I just want to see him be thrown in more defensive sets. He doesn't need to be on the field for half of the Bengals' defensive plays, but maybe somewhere closer to a dozen. More than one snap, at least.

Battle was another draft pick that got a lot of hype this off-season, mainly because many experts projected him to go in the second round so when the Bengals took him in the third it seemed like a steal. It's too early to determine such, especially if they keep giving him such low snaps on defense. Again, just a dozen, give or take, would be enough to satiate this curiosity and see what the Alabama product can bring to this defense.


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Unfortunately, he is probably the least likely out of this list to see more snaps moving forward (barring injury, of course), as the coaching staff seems pretty set with having Nick Scott and Dax Hill out there starting at the safety positions. I doubt they'll change their minds unless Scott continues to struggle in coverage, as he allowed three receptions on just four targets in Week 1. Be prepared to see most of Battle's action come from special teams play.