CINCINNATI — Competition returned to the practice field outside of Paul Brown Stadium as the Bengals' organized training activities (OTAs) started this week. Cincinnati's OTAs started later than the rest of the league because the team decided to push the start date back following the longest season in NFL history.
The Bengals have been holding voluntary practices for the last three weeks, but OTAs mean players were able to strap on their helmets and compete. Coaches had a chance to check out offensive and defensive skills positions in Tuesday's non-contact "7v7" drill.
"They want to be perfect, these guys have a very high standard for themselves," head coach Zac Taylor said. "These guys have a very high standard for themselves, and it's upsetting when something doesn't quite go their way. That's what you want to see as a coach, that frustration and fuel to get it right on the next rep, that's where we want to be right now."
Ja'Marr Chase, the reigning Offensive Rookie of the Year, said he was happy to get back on the field with his teammates.
"It is great having an opportunity going against these guys again, back doing our tendencies, knowing each other well," Chase said. "Talking trash with one another, it's all about having fun. We finally have an opportunity to do it."
The Bengals' first-round draft pick, Dax Hill, was able to get an impression of what other defenses will be seeing when lining up against the Bengals' offense.
"All the receivers ran pretty good routes," Hill said. "Joe Burrow is really pretty good — looking people off, trying to sway the defense. For the most part, it was good competition."
The Bengals and Steelers kick off their regular season in Cincinnati in just 96 days.
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