When the 2022 season was getting underway, a lot of Cincinnati Bengals fans had written Jackson Carman off. After all, the second-round pick entering his second season had every opportunity to win the starting left guard job but couldn't win the job and lost out to fourth-round rookie Cordell Volson.
By Week 3, Carman was on the inactive list pretty much the rest of the way until La'el Collins' injury forced the team to have more o-line depth ready to go.
After Jonah Williams went down in the Wild Card game, Carman was forced into action and there was some good and some bad from the Clemson product. PFF gave Carman an overall grade of 49.6 with a pass-blocking grade of 49.3 and a run-blocking grade of 46.0. He surrendered one sack and was flagged once.
Jackson Carman can change his narrative.
Carman played left tackle in college so the Bengals moving him to guard could have been to blame for his poor play over his first season. It's hard to switch from tackle to guard or vice versa and now Carman will have a chance to play at his preferred position of left tackle.
With it looking as though Jonah Williams will miss Sunday's game against the Bills, this is do or die time for Carman. If he doesn't play well in this game and the Bengals' season ends, that might be it for Carman. He has to play decently on Sunday or he might be someone the team can move on from in the offseason.
With a decent performance, the Bengals could look at Carman as their future left tackle, especially since Williams did not play well this year. There's a lot at stake for Jackson Carman as he takes the field in the AFC Divisional Round so let's hope he doesn't screw up this opportunity.
Oh, it's also Carman's birthday on Sunday so maybe that will motivate him to play better.