Two years ago the Bengals was the worst rushing team in the league. It has been decades since the NFL hasn’t seen the Bengals as a fantastic rushing team. Even with Andrew Whitworth and Kevin Zeitler the team didn’t even produce 1000 yards between Giovanni Bernard and Jeremy Hill. This past year the Offense was dead last in rushing after the first 14 games. This was due to lack of opening holes and having the right personnel to do so.
Hard to tell who to blame on the Offensive Line. A lot of times you can blame the Center seeming he orchestrates the whole line. The problem is the Bengals have had the same Center the past 4 years and they just started getting bad 2 years ago. Now here is a theory that was told once before.
The Bengals last 2 games of 2017 was one of the biggest turn rounds in the running game i ever witnessed on any team. They went from averaging 78 yards rushing the first 14 games to 147 yards rushing the last 2 games. The way this worked was redesigning the Offensive Line with what they have. They benched Cedric Ogbuehi and Jake Fisher and moved Clint Boling to Left Tackle and Eric Winston to Right Tackle. Then Christian Westerman and Trey Hopkins came in as the Guard with Alex Redmond as backup to both. It was pure genius. No one has really thought about that. The Bengals know they can’t keep bringing that same great Offensive Line to start next year but they might want to think about keeping the likes of Clint Boling and Christian Westerman.
In retrospect, the Bengals need a new Center and maybe a tackle for the aging Eric Winston. They will still need to play a part in Free Agency but not as much as the naked eye thinks.