CINCINNATI — Do not count on a reunion between the Cincinnati Bengals and former All-Professional sort out Andrew Whitworth.
Cincinnati coach Zac Taylor chuckled on the thought of luring Whitworth, who retired after final season, out of broadcasting to fill the Bengals’ void at proper sort out. In so many phrases, Taylor all however dominated out Whitworth as a risk.
“We have good people in the building that we trust,” Taylor stated with a smile.
Taylor stated beginning proper sort out La’el Collins seemingly can be out for the season after he suffered a left knee harm within the crew’s win over the New England Patriots on Saturday. Taylor stated the crew remains to be gathering extra data however is “not optimistic” Collins will be capable to return.
In a podcast launched Tuesday, Whitworth stated any time an offensive lineman will get injured, his Twitter notifications get busy. That was very true when Collins suffered his harm.
Whitworth retired earlier this yr after he helped the Los Angeles Rams beat the Bengals in Tremendous Bowl LVI. The 41-year-old ended a 16-year profession that included two All-Professional choices, 4 Professional Bowl nods and the Walter Payton Man of the 12 months award in 2021. After the Bengals drafted Whitworth in 2006, he performed left sort out for Cincinnati for the following 11 seasons earlier than ending his profession with a five-year stint for the Rams. Since retiring, Whitworth has been a part of Amazon Prime Video’s NFL protection, which debuted this season.
On “The Season with Peter Schrager” podcast, Whitworth stated he has by no means dominated out returning.
“I think for me, just who I am, I’ve said this since the day I retired, I’ll never say never,” Whitworth stated. “There’s always a chance. I love adventures. I love taking on chances.”
Nonetheless, he did word that he spent his profession principally as a left sort out and that making the transition to proper sort out is tough. Whitworth added that any resolution to return wouldn’t be about tarnishing his legacy however about not letting down future teammates.
“I wouldn’t want to go in there and mess up their chances, not knowing really what I’m capable of,” Whitworth stated, referencing Cincinnati’s postseason odds.
Third-year participant Hakeem Adeniji is projected to be Collins’ alternative for the remainder of the season. Adeniji, who completed his faculty profession at Kansas taking part in left sort out, has expertise on either side of the road of scrimmage. As a rookie, he made three begins at left sort out and one at proper sort out. Final season, Adeniji began the ultimate 9 video games, together with Tremendous Bowl LVI, at proper guard.
“It was kind of new playing guard last year,” Adeniji informed reporters Tuesday. “It’s kind of more natural playing tackle. Having that full camp and early season, as opposed to last year, I definitely feel a lot better.”
Taylor would not make any declarations on the place for the crew’s coming recreation towards the Buffalo Payments on “Monday Night Football.” He stated that if Cincinnati’s scouting division presents any potential choices for brand spanking new gamers, he’ll take into account them.
Nonetheless, the fourth-year coach reiterated the belief in these already on the roster.
“We’ve got guys that we’ve had in here developing, working in our system, that we’ve got a high degree of trust in that can help us do the things that we need to this year,” Taylor stated.
In different harm information, the Bengals might have tight finish Hayden Hurst for the Payments showdown. Hurst has missed the previous three video games with a proper calf harm. He was downgraded to out for the crew’s Week 16 victory over the Patriots for precautionary causes, Taylor stated.
“I thought if we could give it another nine days, he’d be in great shape going in this week,” Taylor stated. “So, very optimistic about him.”