Now is the time to think of red flags for NFL teams — rest assured the Cincinnati Bengals are thinking about it ahead of training camp.
That biggest red flag is the offensive line, of course. One might argue Joe Burrow’s knee, Zac Taylor and his coaching staff’s struggles or even the pass-rush could qualify as the biggest red flag.
But it all still feels like it pales in comparison to the offensive line. Said line sports supposed upgrades in Riley Reiff at right tackle and second-round pick Jackson Carman at right guard.
Those sound fine on paper. But left guard is still a tossup of random names, ranging from veterans like Quinton Spain to maybe even struggle-filled projects like Mike Jordan and Billy Price. And center, normally a strength, is an unknown as Trey Hopkins comes back from injury.
And while numbers say Bengals got it right taking Ja’Marr Chase over Penei Sewell, the team banks a ton on the return of line coach Frank Pollack. Based on his past work it’s safe to trust him with the revival of a Spain or proper development of a Jonah Williams or Carman, but the task he faces is immense.
Regardless of what the inevitable positive training camp reports say, the offensive line will continue to be the main red flag for the Bengals.