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Hobs: Old D-line Rotates Back


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The boys are back in town...

There is big Pat Sims again, swatting away a Terrelle Pryor dump pass during Tuesday’s workout.

There is Carlos Dunlap before practice talking about his goal of an NFL record 23 sacks this season, brimming with the same confidence that has made him one of the franchise’s most prolific sackers.

There is Wallace Gilberry saying he wouldn’t be surprised if he did it because Dunlap has the potential “to be a Pro Bowler.” but not divulging his own goal.

There is Will Clarke, the new kid, looking more and more like the young Michael Johnson and even wearing his same number of those good old days: 93

And there is Geno Atkins, as usual, in the middle of it all, not uttering a syllable.

“I look around,” says Gilberry, “and it is three years ago.”

Which would be very good for the Bengals defensive line because in 2012 they set a club record with 51 sacks as Atkins posted the third most in history and Johnson the fifth most, with 12.5 and 11.5, respectively.

And the reason they are sounding like Thin Lizzy’s 1976 summer hit “The Boys Are Back in Town,’ is because they think the rotation is intact.

Johnson, the right end, has returned from a one-year hiatus in Tampa. Sims is back from a two-year exile in Oakland. Atkins, the three-time Pro Bowler, is looking like his destructive self before he tore his ACL on Halloween 2013. Clarke, the third-rounder from last year, has convinced them he’s got enough weight and experience to contribute. Last season’s league-low 23 sacks are a distant memory.

More: http://www.bengals.com/news/article-1/Old-D-line-rotates-back/61cc1a7d-cb77-4cb2-8711-ac9df3cc964a

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