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Cincinnati Bengals Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Fantasy Football News 2022

Most Recent Fantasy Football News & Updates

Bengals DE Michael Johnson is inactive today vs. the Patriots.  He has yet to be cleared after suffering a concussion in the Week 4 loss to Cleveland.  As expected, CB Leon Hall is also inactive again.  He's dealing with a calf injury.  Both absences can only hurt the Bengals D against New England.

Bengals DE Michael Johnson is questionable for Sunday as he continues to work through the league's concussion protocol. Johnson missed practice all week and has yet to be cleared. That obviously makes him quite iffy. If clearance comes Saturday, he could still be an IDP option. That said, even a healthy Johnson doesn't look good this week against Patriots LT Nate Solder.

Bengals top CB Leon Hall and S Reggie Nelson join CB Dre Kirkpatrick as "doubtful" for the Week 4 matchup with Cleveland.  That's quite a bit of secondary talent to sit, but the Bengals' D should have enough left overall to limit the Browns' Brian Hoyer-led offense.

Bengals DE Carlos Dunlap put in a full practice Monday and expects to be ready for Sunday's opener.  He conceded, though, that he needs this week to prepare.  "I missed the preseason so one of my things is get my conditioning up because those guys got the game reps I wasn’t able to get so I am getting my conditioning up, doing extra running as a team," he told the team website.  We're willing to take on that bit of risk to start the high-upside Dunlap against the Bears in Week 1.

The Bengals had both of their starting DEs Monday for the 1st time since the early days of training camp.  LDE Carlos Dunlap sat out more than 2 weeks because of a concussion.  RDE Michael Johnson had missed 11 days -- since the preseason opener -- with a sore back.  Monday's practice was pad-less, but HC Marvin Lewis had said he expected to get many injured guys back this week.  The fact that Dunlap has been cleared should allow him to get back to his previous high level.  Johnson's back issue is a bit more worrisome for its potential to recur.  Both bring starter value to the DL slots in your IDP league.  The presence of both is important for the Bengals' team D to approach its terrific scoring potential.

Bengals rookie S Shawn Williams sits behind George Iloka on the depth chart but impressed with his work Saturday night.  While Iloka sat out with a wrist injury, Williams tallied 10 tackles, double what anyone else on the team produced.  Williams rotated in with Taylor Mays -- who started -- early, but took nearly all the snaps from the mid-1st quarter on.  The team website reports that Williams has also impressed in practice recently, including INTs on consecutive days.  Iloka will reportedly return soon with some sort of brace on his wrist.  Don't be surprised if Williams pushes him for the job next to Reggie Nelson, though.  If Williams gets into the lineup, he'll carry intriguing IDP upside.

Bengals OC Jay Gruden confirmed that the team will use more 2-TE sets this year with Tyler Eifert joining Jermaine Gresham on the field.  Cincy used 2 TEs on just 23% of their plays last year.  They went with 3 WRs 53% of the time.  Those numbers could easily flip-flop in 2013.  "It's very easy to take out that third receiver and put a tight end in there and call the same plays," Gruden said. "A lot of it is the same thing. It's a matter of keeping the personnel on the field that you want to dictate. Every year you have a draft and you have some new toys, so things change. You have to adjust."  It sounds like Gruden is essentially treating Eifert as a WR -- good news for his fantasy value.  Meanwhile, slot man Andrew Hawkins figures to see less playing time this year as the Bengals use fewer 3-WR sets.

Bengals RB coach Jim Anderson is at the Senior Bowl this week looking for an RB to complement BenJarvus Green-Ellis. A healthy Bernard Scott might have fit that role perfectly, but Cincinnati will probably find that right after they locate Bigfoot, Nessie and Manti Te'o's girlfriend. Scott is coming off an ACL tear and headed for free agency anyway. The Bengals would certainly benefit from throwing something other than the predictable Lawfirm at defenses. The numbers BGE put up late in the year could also be hurt by ceding touches to a teammate. We'll see what Cincinnati comes up with.

Bengals HC Marvin Lewis says he won't rest his starters in Week 17, despite being locked into the #6 seed.  Lewis rested his starters 2 previous times, and Cincy was eliminated in its first playoff game on both occasions.  "How'd that turn out for us?" Lewis asked rhetorically.  "I think it's important for our team to play well. We are going to play to win the football game. [We're playing for] improvement."  Andy Dalton, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, A.J. Green, and Jermaine Gresham will be safe to use in fantasy this weekend.

Bengals QB Andy Dalton expects Brandon Tate, Armon Binns, and Mohamed Sanu to rotate snaps at #2 WR this season.  "Right now, the way they’ve performed, I have no reservation whatsoever of anybody coming in there," OC Jay Gruden added. "My play calling won’t alter one bit if Sanu, Armon or Tate is out there."  While we expect Sanu to eventually take this job and run with it, all 3 guys should be avoided in redraft leagues.  WR A.J. Green and TE Jermaine Gresham will dominate targets in Cincinnati this year.

Bengals insider Joe Reedy expects the team to use a "backfield-by-committee approach in which there will be a more equal distribution of carries between [Bernard] Scott and BenJarvus Green-Ellis."  This has been our thinking all offseason.  There was talk a few months ago of BGE being a workhorse in Cincy, but he's just a mediocre runner with subpar pass-catching skills.  Scott will see plenty of action carrying the ball and also figures to serve as the 3rd-down back.  While Green-Ellis is the smart bet to lead the team in carries, the two backs should finish close in total touches.  Scott could prove to be the better value in 2012 fantasy drafts.

Bengals OC Jay Gruden called the RB position one of the team's top offseason priorities.  "With the running back situation the way it is we need to address it if there's a top of a line guy there," Gruden said. "What's exciting about the backs is I think there are a number of them that can come in here and help out a lot."  Cincinnati isn't expected to bring free-agent RB Cedric Benson back, and RB Bernard Scott can't handle a 300-carry season.  The Bengals could hit the free-agent market for a guy like Michael Bush, Peyton Hillis, or Mike Tolbert.  Or they could add a rookie with one of their two 1st-round picks.

The Bengals effectively rotated 8 defensive linemen in Sunday's win over Cleveland. DEs Michael Johnson and Robert Geathers started alongside DTs Domata Peko and Geno Atkins. DE Carlos Dunlap, DE Frostee Rucker, DL Jonathan Fanene and DT Pat Sims also saw significant time. The line was key in limiting Peyton Hillis to just 57 yards, and the rotation will help keep pass rushers fresh throughout the year. Johnson is the most intriguing among the starters, though Atkins carries significant sack upside in DT-required IDP leagues. Dunlap, of course, brings the highest fantasy ceiling of all involved. Fanene has been an occasional IDP contributor and is helped by his inside-outside versatility.

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