Didn’t it seem like what the New England Patriots had going was just too good to be true? I thought so, and it turns out that might be the case. With Aaron Hernandez‘s release, and Rob Gronkowski‘s multiple offseason surgeries, the once great tight end duo, is no more. I feel like the Patriots started the two tight end trend, and then many other teams around the league followed suit. The Cincinnati Bengals have now become the latest team to jump on that bandwagon.
Clearly, teams have played with two tight ends for decades, but in the modern day pass-happy NFL, two pass-catching tight ends is the way to go. The Bengals already had a very reliable TE on the roster in Jermaine Gresham, and then they went out and initially shocked a few people by taking Tyler Eifert in the first round of this year’s draft.
Eifert was widely considered this year’s top TE prospect, so you have to think he’ll see immediate and frequent playing time this season. On the other side of the field, Gresham is coming of his second consecutive Pro Bowl season. Put the two together, and I think we have a candidate for the next best TE duo in the NFL. The spot is open with all the troubles in New England, and there’s no reason to think that Gresham and Eifert can’t be just as good.
During their best season together in 2011, Gronkowski and Hernandez combined for a whopping 2,237 yards and 24 touchdowns, so clearly the Bengals’ duo has their work cut out for them. I believe it will take them a year or two to get near that level or production, but you have to keep in mind that Gronk’s 2011 season was arguably the best ever for a TE. Regardless, the Bengals have a good thing going at tight end as they get ready for the upcoming season, and for many years to come.
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