CINCINNATI — The Bengals' offseason program continues on Tuesday with in-person OTA's (organized team activities).
Plenty of veteran players are expected to attend the voluntary workouts including Jessie Bates, Mike Hilton and Tyler Boyd.
OTA's will last for three days over the next three weeks starting on Tuesday, May 25. The team will workout Tuesday-Thursday (May 25-27). They'll also practice on June 1-3 and June 8-10. Those are voluntary and plenty of veteran players may decide to skip OTA's and workout on their own.
Mandatory minicamp is from June 15-17. Every player on the Bengals' roster is expected to be in attendance.
AllBengals will be at Paul Brown Stadium to bring you the latest news from OTA's. There are many topics that we'll be monitoring, but here are the top three storylines that we'll be paying attention to over the next few weeks.
Burrow threw to Ja'Marr Chase last week for the first time since the Bengals reunited the LSU legends on draft night. It was another step in the right direction for the 24-year-old, who's expected to be back for the start of the regular season. There's a chance we could get to see him throw during OTA's or at mandatory minicamp (June 15-17).
The Bengals may keep him hidden during the portions of practice that are open to the media, but Burrow's health, his activity and participation will be topic No. 1 over the next few months.
The Bengals added six new defensive linemen and four new offensive linemen in free agency and the draft. They also brought in Frank Pollack and Marion Hobby to coach the offensive and defensive lines, respectively.
We aren't going to see full pads at OTA's, but their work with new faces like Trey Hendrickson and Riley Reiff—along with the seven [combined] draft picks could make a big difference in their quest to get better in the trenches.
In person OTA's and minicamps should allow Pollack to help Jonah Williams with his technique. Even young guys that were on the roster last year like Hakeem Adeniji, Michael Jordan and Fred Johnson should embrace the chance they've been given to jump start their careers.
It will be interesting to monitor defensive line rotations. Who will start at left guard for the Bengals? How much work will Trey Hopkins be able to do after suffering a torn ACL in Week 17?
If the Bengals are going to be a quality team this season, they need Burrow to stay healthy and they have to be much better in the trenches.
Star Young Trio vs Veteran Room
The Bengals should have one of the best wide receiver trios this season. Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd are back in the mix. There's no reason why Higgins can't take a step forward in year two.
Boyd is looking for his third 1,000-yard season. He would've eclipsed that mark last year if it wasn't for Burrow's injury combined with a concussion that essentially kept him out of two games late in the season.
Add a playmaker like Chase to a room that already has Higgins and Boyd and the sky is the limit for the Bengals' wide receiver room.
On the flip side, Cincinnati has completely revamped their secondary over the past two offseasons. Trae Waynes, Chidobe Awuzie and Mike Hilton are expected to be the Bengals' starting cornerbacks. Their next snap in stripes will be their first, which means offseason workouts are crucial.
The trio of young receivers should push the veteran cornerbacks and vice versa. Waynes, Awuzie and Hilton have heard plenty about Chase. They're absolutely going to test him in OTA's and minicamp.
Waynes is 100% recovered from the torn pectoral muscle that prevented him from suiting up for the Bengals last season. How will he look after being out for nearly an entire calendar year? Will he attend voluntary workouts?
It'll also be interesting to see how defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo uses Hilton. The veteran is one of the NFL's best slot blitzers.
These are just three of the many story lines that we'll be monitoring.
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