The Patriots have "The Gronk" and the Bengals are hoping TE Jermaine Gresham (a.k.a. "The Gresh") turns into quarterback Andy Dalton's X-Factor as his first non-A.J. Green option down the field.
OC Jay Gruden has been pushing Gresham to be more meticulous with his assignments and he wasn't happy after Tuesday's practice, where Gruden said he had a "major" mistake. But he can also see the progress.
"Jermaine has got to work at it every day, no question about it," Gruden said. "He's come a long way with his route discipline and knowledge of the offense with the run game, especially. Just have to keep repping him. Some of the concepts where he has to read coverages on the move he has to get better at."
"We've got to do a good job getting him more involved downfield and he's got to make sure he's more accountable for the quarterback," Gruden said. "The quarterback has to feel the confidence he can go to Jermaine when Jermaine is ready and in the right spot. When he gets to that point I would expect him to put up some strong numbers."
With Jerome Simpson gone, it's unlikely that the 105 targets he saw in 2011 are going to whoever wins Cincy's WR2 job. That means that Gresham could see an increase in the 92 targets (11th among TEs) he received last season.