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New Bengals Coach Zac Taylor Says WR John Ross Will Get a ‘Fresh Start’

New Bengals head coach Zac Taylor says he wants to give wide receiver John Ross a “fresh start” according to Geoff Hobson of bengals.com.

“Some of these players with what they’ve done in the past, it’s good for a fresh start with a new coaching staff,” was Taylor’s exact quote. “Let’s see what he can put on tape. He was electric in college.”

“In college” is the perfect qualifier for Ross as he has thus far found little success in the NFL. Ross electrified the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine with his blazing speed, convincing the Bengals to make him the No.9-overall pick out of the University of Washington despite his fragile frame (%’!!”, 190 lbs.) and extensive injury history.

That injury history followed him to the NFL and made his rookie season a virtual washout, as he appeared in only three games and did not catch a single pass.

2018 was somewhat better as he caught 21 passes for 210 yards and seven touchdowns in 13 games but he still seemed like mostly an afterthought in the Bengals offense. Even worse, former Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis and his staff seemed to give up on Ross very early, which can’t have done much for his confidence.

And there have been trade rumors all offseason, even though the Bengals would likely get little value in return at this juncture.

It is way too early to give up on Ross considering that he is still only 23 years old and still possesses that speed. But 2019 will be a crucial year for him and he tries to learn the new offensive scheme and impress the new coaching staff. Ross probably won’t be playing for his roster spot this summer, but he is one of the Bengals most on the spot.

Check out the Complete 2019 Cincinnati Bengals Schedule

CincyJungle.com

The 2019 NFL Schedule is out – and Bengals fans you can start to look at what trips you want to take and days off as well!

Here it is – the complete 2019 Bengals slate!

Sept. 8 at Seattle Seahawks 4:05
Sept. 15 San Francisco 49ers 1:00
Sept. 22 at Buffalo Bills 1:00
Sept. 30 at Pittsburgh Steelers (Mon) 8:15
Oct. 6 Arizona Cardinals 1:00
Oct. 13 at Baltimore Ravens 1:00
Oct. 20 Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00
Oct. 27 at Los Angeles Rams (London) 1:00
Bye
Nov. 10 Baltimore Ravens 1:00
Nov. 17 at Oakland Raiders 4:25
Nov. 24 Pittsburgh Steelers 1:00
Dec. 1 New York Jets 1:00
Dec. 8 at Cleveland Browns 1:00
Dec. 15 New England Patriots 1:00
Dec. 22 at Miami Dolphins 1:00

Dec. 29 Cleveland Browns 1:00

Bengals Re-Sign CB Darqueze Dennard to a One-Year Deal

The Bengals secondary got a big boost on Monday, as the team re-signed cornerback Darqueze Dennard to a one-year contract.

Dennard will earn $5 million on the one-year agreement according to NFL Network.

The cornerback preferred a one-year contract over a multi-year deal, with the intention of testing the free-agent market next off-season, according to the NFL Network.

“It’s a great feeling. Great relief to finally get this over with,” Dennard told Bengals.com Monday.

“It’s good to be back in Cincinnati. I’m happy to be a part of it and I’m ready to get back to work. … With the talent we have throughout the room, I think we should be the number one secondary.”

Denard was picked by the Bengals in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

He became an unrestricted free agent on March 13th before returning to Cincinnati.

Last season the corner played in 13 games, with a career-high nine starts, with 68 total tackles, six passes defensed, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. His 68 tackles ranked fourth on the team in 2018.

In five NFL seasons, Dennard has tallied 237 total tackles, three interceptions, 3.0 sacks, 17 passes defensed and one defensive touchdown.

Bengals Bringing Back TE Tyler Eifert, Ink Him to One-Year Deal

Tyler Eifert is back in the fold for the Bengals, as the team and the often injured agreed to a one-year deal for the 2019 season.

Since 2015 Eifert has only been able to play in 14 games, four of which were last season before he broke his ankle on September 30th against the Falcons and missed the final 12 games of the year.

In the four games he played in he had 15 catches with one touchdown.

Last season Eifert’s deal was worth $8.5 million with $3 million guaranteed.

Earlier this week the Bengals re-signed C.J. Uzomah to a new deal, while losing free agent tight end Tyler Kroft to the Bills.

Report: Bengals Shopping Former First-Round Pick WR John Ross

Almost two years to the day when John Ross lit Lucas Oil Stadium ablaze with a 4.22 40-yard-dash in the NFL Scouting Combine, the receiver is quickly running out of time in Cincinnati, Jeremy Bergman of NFL.com reports.

The Bengals are shopping Ross after just two seasons with the club, sources told NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport on Tuesday.

Drafted ninth overall in the 2017 NFL Draft on the strength of that record-breaking 40 time, Ross missed most of his rookie year due to injury, failing to record a single reception. In 2018, Ross bounced back somewhat, tallying seven touchdowns on just 21 receptions for 210 yards over 13 games played.

If Ross is to be swapped for picks or players, Cincy would be left with starting wideouts A.J. Green and Tyler Boyd, both of whom are only signed through 2019.

Bengals Chatting with Florida DC Todd Grantham About Defensive Coordinator Job

The Bengals are still on the search for a defensive coordinator for new head coach Zac Taylor, and Ian Rapoport of NFL.com says the team has narrowed the search to put the focus on University of Florida DC Todd Grantham.

Sources: The #Bengals have narrowed their defensive coordinator search to focus on #Florida DC Todd Grantham, and he’s back in the building this morning. The only question is, can the #Bengals and new coach Zac Taylor pull him away from UF.

There’s been quite a few names that the team has chatted with about the DC spot, including Rams cornerbacks coach Aubrey Pleasant, former Falcons defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel, Texas A&M DC Mike Elko, and Saints defensive backs coach Aaron Glenn.

As for Grantham, he’s going to cost to make the jump to the NFL, as last year with Florida he made close to $1.5 million, so he won’t be cheap if the team can talk him into coming aboard.

Bengals Going All In on Youth with the Head Coach and OC Positions

Bengals’ Zac Taylor, 35, and Brian Callahan, 34, will comprise far and away the youngest head coach-offensive coordinator combination in the league, Paul Dehner of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports.

They point out the need to dissect the true meaning of experience.

“When you look at where Zac and I come from and take out just years in the league or experience, we’ve got a lot of experience in a lot of different areas that are beneficial,” Callahan said. “His dad was a coach. My dad was a coach. We’ve had access to things that not a lot of people get access to at that age. I do think there’s kind of a shared experience with those types of things that give you the experience that doesn’t necessarily count on a resume.”

Callahan has been in the NFL 10 years. He made it to the Super Bowl twice, both as an offensive assistant with the Broncos.

Taylor’s coaching time frame dates back 12 years with his one Super Bowl trip last season.

“I think years in this league are like dog years,” Callahan said. “The amount of experience you gain in one year in the NFL, I think, is different than the traditional work environment. It’s so high stress. There are so many things that happen and move so fast. The amount of things that go on into a 16-game season and through the course of an offseason, you learn at an accelerated pace,” Callahan said. “I think that’s why you have so many younger coaches being able to handle these things. The lessons you learn happen so much quicker.”

Callahan points to the likes of Gruden, John Madden and Al Davis, Mike Shanahan, Sean Payton and Sean McVay. Across generations, coaches became coordinators or head coaches in the mid-to-early 30s. All of those names did.

That doesn’t change the reality of what’s happening at Paul Brown Stadium right now. At the most important staff combination in the league, nobody is close to as young as Taylor and Callahan. More importantly, neither led the creation and implementation of an offense before.

The average age of the current NFL offensive coordinators is 45. The average head coach is 50.

Taylor and Callahan are a combined 69 years old. No other combo is younger than 78.

Callahan is the fourth-youngest OC in the league. Dallas just hired 29-year-old Kellen Moore as the youngest. But all the young coordinators are paired with more experienced head coaches.

A thesis during this hiring period was the league has never been more uniquely positioned for young coaches to enter and experience instant success. McVay (33) serves as an obvious example. Kyle Shanahan (39) and Matt Nagy (40) the other successful iterations.

The dramatic personality and learning shift among today’s players merging with the changing model of the current offensive playbook all wrapped up in an analytics revolution move young coaches into the crosshairs.

Taylor and Callahan discussed these grandiose ideas – along with the granular intricacies of a post-wheel concept – during many breakfasts over the years at the NFL Scouting Combine. Neither can remember exactly when they came across each other, likely when Callahan’s dad was coaching Taylor at Nebraska.

Bengals Officially Name Zac Taylor as Teams’ New Head Coach

The Bengals made it official on Monday, hiring Los Angeles Rams quarterbacks coach Zac Taylor as the 10th head coach in the history of the franchise.

Cincinnati could not hire Taylor until the Rams were eliminated from the playoffs, and they had to wait till the conclusion of Super Bowl LIII, a 13-3 loss by the Rams to the New England Patriots on Sunday.

Taylor, 35, will be the second-youngest coach in the league behind his former boss, 33-year-old Sean McVay.

Reports say that the new Bengals coach, who took over for Marvin Lewis who was fired after the season, will bring in Raiders quarterbacks coach Brian Callahan, 34, as his new offensive coordinator.

“I am happy and fortunate to join the Cincinnati Bengals as head coach,” Taylor said in a statement.

“This is a great organization with good people and a rich history, and I am excited to get started. I am looking to add to that history by setting high standards, and holding everyone here accountable to those standards. There is a lot of work to do, and this is Day 1. We’re going to attack every day with enthusiasm to get this team ready to go.”