The Bengals drafted a pair of tight ends over the weekend, but it doesn’t look like concerns about Tyler Eifert’s recovery from shoulder and elbow surgeries was the impetus to double down on the position.
Eifert said Monday that he’s waiting to get full clearance to return from his shoulder injury, a torn labrum that he had repaired after dislocating his elbow in the first game of last season. He expects to get that clearance before the start of training camp and is working to rebuild his strength until then.
With Jermaine Gresham out of the way, Eifert should be a nice late-round pick provided he can stay healthy. He has good size and speed, and showed pretty good hands as a rookie. He only played about 60 percent of the snaps in 2013, and averaged 0.14 FP (PPR) per snap. Extrapolate the same production to 90 percent of the snaps (which is typical for a starting tight end), and Eifert shouldn't have any problem posting top 15 numbers. With solid improvement, he could very well be this year's Jordan Cameron (2013) or Travis Kelce (2014).
Bengals.com writer Geoff Hobson on the team's running back situation: Jeremy Hill may be the bell cow next year, but Giovani Bernard is still going to get a lot of key touches as the change-of-pace guy. If Hill gets 15-to-20 touches a game, Gio gets 8-11. The only question is how. I think Hue Jackson uses him a lot more in the pass game this year. With Jermaine Gresham expected to be gone, I’m going to write in Gio for 60 catches.
Over the first seven weeks, Bernard averaged 18.7 touches compared to 9.0 for rookie Jeremy Hill. The script flipped once Bernard missed three games in the middle of the season due to injury. Hill averaged 22.0 touches for nearly 130 yards during that span and took over as the team's primary runner. Then, over the final six games, Hill averaged 20.0 touches for 104 total yards, while Bernard saw 13.3 touches for 67 total yards. Bernard averaged 12.2 PPR FP in that span, so he should still be a solid RB2 in PPR formats, even in a reduced role.
Bengals.com writer Geoff Hobson on the team's TE situation: It looks like there is a very good possibility they won’t re-sign Jermaine Gresham, but it’s not a pass catcher they need to replace. They’ve got that in Tyler Eifert. They’re going to need a big guy that can block the tall, lean, big pass rushers like Terrell Suggs. Gresham did a good job with that and I suspect they’ll have an easier time finding that guy in free agency rather than the draft. The guy won’t be the target that Gresham is, but they’ll still be able to play double tight end sets.
If Gresham is out of the way, Eifert should be a nice late-round pick provided he can stay healthy. He has good size and speed, and showed pretty good hands as a rookie. He only played about 60 percent of the snaps in 2013, and averaged 0.14 FP (PPR) per snap. Extrapolate the same production to 90 percent of the snaps (which is typical for a starting tight end), and Eifert shouldn't have any problem posting top 15 numbers. With solid improvement, he could very well be this year's Jordan Cameron (2013) or Travis Kelce (2014).
We'd like to hear that he'll be available for minicamp, but this is the next best thing. He was a breakout candidate coming into the 2014 season and could be a prime late-round value pick in 2015 drafts if Jermaine Gresham moves on. (Gresham is a free agent.)
Friday, January 2, 2015, 5:04pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (back, questionable) returned to take limited reps Friday after missing practice earlier in the week and is questionable for Week 18. The Bengals may have to lean on Gresham with A.J. Green likely out. He’s not a safe start in daily due to the questionable tag, however.
Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (illness) was removed from the injury report Friday after taking full practice reps Thursday. Gresham will play in a big game against Pittsburgh.
Christopher Clark (T, back), Cortrelle Anderson (RB, ankle), Cody Latimer (WR, concussion), Jacob Tamme (TE, ribs), Demaryius Thomas (WR, ankle), Julius Thomas (TE, ankle), Will Montgomery (C, knee).
Paul Cornick (T, toe), Brandon Marshall (LB, foot).
Brandon Tate (WR, illness), Jermaine Gresham (TE, toe), Margus Hunt (DE, ankle), Terence Newman (CB, ankle), Mike Pollak (G, knee), Carlos Dunlap (DE, calf), D'Andre Kirkpatrick (CB, Achillies).
QB A.J. McCarron (illness)
Emmanuel Lamur (LB, hamstring), James Wright (WR, knee).
Friday, December 19, 2014, 6:02pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (toe) took full practice reps again Friday. Gresham should be fine to face Denver.
Thursday, December 18, 2014, 6:14pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (toe) took full practice reps Thursday. Gresham should be fine to face Denver.
Monday, December 15, 2014, 10:13am
Friday, December 12, 2014, 6:26pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (toe, questionable) missed practice Friday after taking limited reps Thursday and is questionable for Week 15.
Thursday, December 11, 2014, 6:32pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (toe) was added to the injury report Thursday after taking limited practice reps.
Friday, November 14, 2014, 6:06pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (thigh, probable) took full practice reps again Friday and is probable for Week 11.
Thursday, November 13, 2014, 6:29pm
Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham (thigh) returned to full practice reps Thursday after missing Wednesday. Gresham often gets rest early in the week.
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