3 young Bengals heading for bigger roles in 2023
The Cincinnati Bengals had some key departures during free agency, but they remain intact with the young talent they have rostered. The Bengals lost both starting safeties in Jessie Bates and Vonn Bell. They also lost backup running back Samaje Perine and as of this writing, Irv Smith Jr. is the only tight end on the roster.
However, they added veteran Nick Scott from the Rams who will be a nice addition at safety. They are pretty sturdy outside of those notable spots listed and still have all of their draft capital to work with going into the NFL Draft next month.
With that being said, here are three young Bengals who will have extended roles next season.
3. Chris Evans
The possibility of this changing could happen depending on how aggressive the Bengals are in the Ezekiel Elliott sweepstakes, and the NFL Draft. However, with Samaje Perine now heading to Denver, Chris Evans becomes a much more notable name in the Bengals' running back room.
Evans played in short stints last year and was effective in those moments. He also plays a key role in special teams which makes him a lot more valuable. Evans won't be an every-down back, but he has a unique skill set that makes him a threat out of the backfield and in the passing game, whether out of the slot or lining up alongside the quarterback.
2. Cam Taylor-Britt
Cam Taylor-Britt probably played the most as a rookie last year for the Bengals, but he stepped into a role due to injuries at the position. Taylor-Britt will now step into a massive role. The expectation is that he will be a full-time starter alongside Chidobe Awuzie and Mike Hilton who plays out of the slot.
Taylor-Britt played high-level football in the postseason and continued to improve as the season developed. In each game, you saw him gain more confidence and get more comfortable with each snap he took.
Nonetheless, Cam Taylor-Britt will be a critical piece to Lou Anarumo's defensive unit and he should be stepping into the role that was Eli Apple's the last two seasons.
1. Daxton Hill
Daxton Hill will be the most important youngster to step up this season and play a vital role. The Bengals lost both starting safeties in free agency as I mentioned. However, Cincinnati still has five safeties on the depth chart with Hill, Newly acquired Nick Scott, Michael Thomas, Brandon Wilson, and Tycen Anderson.
Now, this season will be as big as it gets for Dax Hill. Hill did not see the field much in his rookie season. He saw stints here and there and played on special teams but now, this is where the Bengals see what they have with their 2022 first-round pick.
There still could be some additions in the NFL Draft that Cincinnati looks at safety. Although, it seems like Scott and Hill will be the lead tandem at the position this year.