NFL Rookie Watch: A.J. Green
No one quite knows what the Bengals passing game will look like in 2011. Quarterback Carson Palmer has made it clear he would be happy to walk away from the game if the team refuses his demand to be traded, while wide receivers Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens -- who combined for 139 receptions and nearly half of the team's total targets in 2010 -- each have one foot out the door. The loss of those three veterans would all but dismantle a unit which ranked fifth last year in attempts (590) and 11th in passing touchdowns (26).
With a nod to the future, Cincinnati used its top two selections in April's draft to address the situation. Georgia's explosive wide receiver A.J. Green was taken with the fourth overall selection; TCU quarterback Andy Dalton was selected with pick No. 35.
The 6-foot-3, 211-pound Green was one of the draft's most intriguing picks. A standout receiver from a run-first conference, Green caught 50-plus passes in each of his three seasons in the Bulldogs lineup.
First, it's best to clarify that no one should expect Green -- or any rookie wide receiver -- to match Williams' touchdown total (11) from his '10 rookie campaign. That's too much to ask. However, Green does possess the same big-play ability that Tampa Bay's star receiver flexed last year, and probably will rank as one of the leading rookie fantasy producers.
Green will land as a No. 3 receiver in most drafts, but he's a far safer bet as a No. 4.