Skip to main content

Cincinnati HC Zac Taylor believes Bengals' depth 'is the best we've had'

Having won back-to-back AFC North titles and produced a combined five postseason wins over the past two seasons, the Cincinnati Bengals are coming off one of their most fruitful runs in franchise history.

Despite the last two years' triumphs, head coach Zac Taylor is of the belief that this year's squad is the best of the bunch from top to bottom.

"(The depth) is the best we've had and it is hard in pro football now to have as strong as a 53-man roster that we can potentially have," Taylor said following the conclusion of mandatory minicamp, via the team website’s Geoff Hobson. "I just think it is the way the salary cap is built. You've got to acquire young players and hope they step up quickly."

Led by 28th-overall pick Myles Murphy, a defensive end out of Clemson, an already experienced Bengals squad has been buoyed by an eight-player 2023 draft class.

With those additions and others like offensive tackle Orlando Brown and tight end Irv Smith Jr. brought on to a top-heavy roster led by Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase, Taylor is confident he's got a talent-deep roster.

"I think this team has really high-end starters and really talented depth," Taylor said. "You feel like this thing is way ahead of where we've been years past. Especially from the first day I got here. So, you can see the details. Guys are moving so quickly. The players here are empowered, they've taken ownership of our schemes and so that allows them to take the next step.

"New players I think feel that and they feel the need to study up and maximize the reps they get because they can see guys that have been in these systems for years now at the high level that they're playing, the high level of understanding what we're asking them to do, and that's a really good thing for our team."

Minicamp just broke and just about every Bengal -- and every other NFL player -- is fast on their way to a relaxing weekend with training camp roughly a month away. Thusly, it's pump-the-brakes time when it comes to getting too excited about the 2023 season ahead. Still, Taylor's seen his roster grow and blossom from a 2-14 squad in 2019 to a 12-4 division champ in 2022.

He knows the true talent will rise to the top when the pads come on this summer, but as of now he's of the mind that this is the best streak of Bengals he's had so far.

"You just really kind of think through where the roster is at the 90-man and you are really encouraged from top to bottom," said Taylor, whose team reconvenes on July 26 for training camp. "There are no players that don't belong here. You can oftentimes get on a 90-man roster. But everyone belongs here and has a role and I'm excited to watch all these guys compete."

Related Content