5 Bengals offseason decisions in 2023 that already look like a disaster

  • Tight end woes
  • Is Volson the guy?
  • Starting safeties
  • Joey B's backup
  • Murphy is invisible so far
Sep 17, 2023; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Cincinnati Bengals tight end Irv Smith Jr. (81) catches a pass
Sep 17, 2023; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Cincinnati Bengals tight end Irv Smith Jr. (81) catches a pass / Sam Greene-USA TODAY Sports
1 of 5

The Cincinnati Bengals are 0-2 to start the year and while they're no strangers to being in this position, there are some offseason decisions that are already looking like they've come back to bite the Stripes.

Let's dive into four decisions the Bengals made in the offseason that already look like they're not panning out. Yes, I know it's early but that's how painfully disastrous these decisions have looked so far.

All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference

5. Rolling with Irv Smith Jr./Not drafting a tight end

This is kind of a two-for-one deal but it's absolutely worth mentioning. The Bengals weren't able to retain Hayden Hurst, who went on to sign with the Carolina Panthers (and scored in their Week 1 game). They opted to sign the oft-injured Irv Smith Jr. and not select one of the many talented tight ends in the draft.

So far, through two games, Smith hasn't been much of an impact player at all. He had several costly plays in the loss to the Ravens in Week 2 and was basically invisible in the Week 1 loss to the Browns.

Some of the tight ends taken in the draft have had impacts for their teams so far. Sam LaPorta has 10 catches for 102 yards for the Lions and Dalton Kincaid has nine catches for 69 yards for the Bills. Luke Musgrave of the Packers has also looked pretty good.

Meanwhile, Smith has caught just five passes for 27 yards. It's still early in the season but so far, Smith has been a disappointment. He's also doubtful for Week 3, meaning the oft-injured label that he's been slapped with is continuing in Cincinnati.