How well will third-year tight end Jermaine Gresham do? Gresham had at least 52 receptions in his first seasons.
By BRYANT K. KIZER
Hallelujah! Pre-season football is over and now let the real games begin.
The Cincinnati Bengals, as well as the other 32 NFL teams, begin their road toNew Orleansfor Super Bowl XLVII. The season kick-offs Thursday, with the defending champs N.Y. Giants hosting the Dallas Cowboys.
The Bengals will open up Monday night atBaltimore.
The Bengals, who were one of the three AFC North Division teams that made it to the playoffs last season, will have a lot of questions to be answered.
How will running back Benjarvus Green-Ellis do? The Bengals said good-bye to Cedric Benson, who gained over 1000 yards for three consecutive seasons with the Bengals. He has since signed with the Green Bay Packers. Green-Ellis rushed for over a 1,00 yards once in his five-year career. In order to get the passing game to work, you need an efficient running game. Will the Bengals have that?
Kizer’s prediction – Green-Ellis will have 800 yards and six touchdowns.
How will quarterback Andy Dalton and wide receiver A.J. Green do in their sophomore season? Both went to the Pro Bowl last season.Dalton, from TCU, threw for nearly 3,500 yards. He had 20 touchdowns. Green had over 1,000 yards and had 65 receptions.
Kizer’s prediction – Dalton’s yards will stay the same. Green will have 80 receptions for 1200 yards and eight touchdowns.
How well will third-year tight end Jermaine Gresham do?Greshamhad at least 52 receptions in his first seasons. He has over 1000 yards and 10 touchdown passes.
Kizer’s prediction – The tight-end is a big part of everyone’s team.Gresham is ranked in the top ten in that category. He will have 60 receptions for 700 yards and nine touchdowns.
Can the Bengals defend? If the Bengals want to go to New Orleans, they will have to defend. The Bengals were in the top ten in most defensive categories. They also added cornerback Dre’ Kirkpatrick, drafted in the first-round of the 2012 NFL Draft.
Kizer’s prediction – Bengals 11-5 AFC North Champs.
Monday night prediction – Ravens 24-20. The Bengals have lost three straight to the Ravens.
Kizer’s NFL prediction –
AFC East – (playoff only) New England
AFC North – Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Baltimore
AFC South – Tennessee
AFC West – Denver
AFC Champs – Denver
NFC East – Philadelphia, N.Y. Giants
NFC North – Green Bay
NFC South – Atlanta, New Orleans,
NFC West – Seattle
NFC Champs – Green Bay
Super Bowl Champs - Denver