The Cincinnati Bengals went on an improbable run during this season’s playoffs. They won the AFC North, earning a home game against the Las Vegas Raiders before turning into road warriors the rest of the way.
Cincinnati knocked off the No. 1 seeded Tennessee Titans in the Divisional Round before taking on the No. 2 seeded Kansas City Chiefs. They won that game as well, advancing onto the Super Bowl where they faced off against the Los Angeles Rams. While they fell short in that game, there is a lot of optimism surrounding this group.
The Bengals’ biggest need coming into the offseason was the offensive line. Joe Burrow has been battered in his two seasons in the NFL and if they want to remain a competitive team for the foreseeable future, he needs to be kept upright.
That has been the focus of their offseason and rightfully so. Three out of the five starting spots were changed, as Ted Karras, Alex Cappa and La’El Collins were all brought in to upgrade the unit.
There could be more additions made, but the Bengals did a solid job of upgrading that unit. Now, they can focus on improving their depth across the roster. One sneaky position of need could be the running back position.
Joe Mixon has been very good, but if they can find an upgrade on Semaje Perine, the Bengals should strongly consider it. One player that would fit the bill is Melvin Gordon. Gordon would provide Cincinnati with excellent insurance in case anything were to happen to Mixon, who did miss 10 games in 2020.
Gordon has spent the last two seasons with the Denver Broncos, splitting carries in both campaigns. It could be a tough sell for him to join the Bengals, as Mixon is entrenched as the starter. Still only 28-years old, he may not be ready to accept a backup role just yet.
But, the one thing that the Bengals could sell Gordon on is the chance to play for a contender, which could entice him. Gordon has played in the postseason only once in his career, playing two games with the Los Angeles Chargers in the 2018 season.
Money also wouldn’t be an issue as Cincinnati has cap space to spend. Given how cold his market has been thus far, Gordon may be willing to take a one-year deal to play for an up-and-coming Bengals team that is one of the most promising teams in the NFL, even if that means a reduced role for the first time in his career.