Defensive player named as Bengals breakout candidate for 2024 season

Cleveland Browns v Cincinnati Bengals
Cleveland Browns v Cincinnati Bengals / Andy Lyons/GettyImages

The Cincinnati Bengals have an interesting mix of established veterans and young talent on the team, especially on the defensive side of the ball. One player in particular could be in store for a big 2024 campaign.

Second-year safety Jordan Battle was recently listed by Pro Football Focus as Cincinnati's top breakout candidate following an impressive rookie season.

Here's what PFF had to say about Battle heading into his second season:

"Battle was one of the highest-graded college safeties heading into the 2023 NFL Draft, and while he fell to the third round and didn’t get a starting job until Week 11 of his rookie season, all of those strong metrics remained. Battle earned top-10 marks at his position, both overall (82.5) and in run defense (81.3), while also adding a 76.4 PFF coverage grade (17th). He should be locked in as a full-time starter to kick off 2024 and continue his impressive play for the Bengals."

It will be extremely interesting to see exactly what Battle's role will be next season. The Bengals added some serious talent at the safety spots in free agency by signing Geno Stone and bringing back Vonn Bell, but Battle should still be in the mix for a starting spot. Perhaps he'll even win the job over Bell. Even if he doesn't begin the season as a starter, Battle should still get some serious on-field opportunity.

As a rookie last season, Battle played in all 17 games for Cincinnati and started in seven. He tallied 71 total tackles, five passes defended and one interception. He's likely the future of the safety position for the Bengals, so it would be wise for them to get him as many reps as possible early in his career. As long as he gets the opportunity, Battle could indeed have a breakout season for the Bengals in 2024.