By Conrad Clowers
Herald Sports Writer
Mercifully, preseason football is over. By the time you read this all teams will have cut to 53 man rosters, and players on that 53 man roster are safe…(for now).
You hear about the household names like Burrow, Chase, Hendrickson, Reader, and Bates. It’s the little man that you never hear about that keeps the train rolling.
Trent Taylor is one of those little men. Taylor can be an explosive game breaker. The San Francisco 49ers have not done the Bengals many favors over the years, but their loss was Cincinnatis gain. Taylor was with the 49ers for the first four seasons of his NFL career. When the 49ers showed no further interest in Taylor, Cincinnati signed the Tennessee born native. Taylor would spend time on the Bengals practice squad last season before being promoted to the roster. He would make his mark in the playoffs when he caught a critical 2 point conversion in the AFC Championship sending the Bengals to the Super Bowl.
Taylor may be buried on a depth chart that sees a galaxy of stars such as Tee Higgins, Tyler Boyd and Jamar Chase, but he is always ready to produce when called upon. Taylor has turned into a dangerous punt return specialist for the Bengals and gives the team a legitimate chance at good field position every time he touches the ball.
NFL teams know at some point depth will be tested over the course of a season. The former Louisiana Tech prospect has shown he can get the job done over the span of his short career. Taylor was first team all conference as a standout in college. He had back-to-back seasons where he had over 1,000 yards receiving for Louisiana in Conference USA.
However, the Bengal wide receiver has had his challenges in his NFL career. Taylor has had a foot injury and Covid that has forced him to miss time.
The onset of the 2022 season looks good for the Bengals and Taylor. The team will start out with two popular NFL studs in the Pittsburg Steelers and the Dallas Cowboys. It will be the first time in the history of the Bengals they have started the season with top division rival Pittsburg. With the teams nearly evenly matched, Taylor may have a chance to be the difference in the game. Not bad for a guy playing a supporting role on a team many look to possibly return to the Super Bowl.