The Cincinnati Bengals have had a mix of good and bad times recently. However, the 2022 NFL season was a really good one for them. They even got to the AFC Championship game. Still, they couldn't quite win that game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Now, as the new season's practice games are happening, a few players are not doing as well as people hoped. La'el Collins, Jeff Gunter, Trent Taylor, and Jackson Carman are not standing out as they should be. This has made the fans and coaches unhappy. So, let's look ahead to the 2023 NFL season and see who might not make it to the main team before the first week.

How the Cincinnati Bengals Did in the 2022-2023 NFL Season

The Bengals really shined in the 2022 NFL season. They played really well, winning 12 games and losing 4. Joe Burrow, their star quarterback, led the team with amazing plays and strong stats. He put up 4,475 yards with 35 touchdowns. Their offense was strong, and they had a good defense, too. Despite everything, they couldn't quite get over the hump and make it to the top. Now, in the 2023 NFL preseason, people had high hopes for some players on the Bengals. several players are not doing as well as people expected. These players were supposed to do great things and maybe even make it to the main team, but they're not impressing anyone right now.

Let's talk about these four players and see who might not make it to the main team before the first week of the season.

1. La'el Collins

There's a chance that Jonah Williams might stay as the right tackle. If that happens, the Bengals might not need La'el Collins anymore. He used to play for the Dallas Cowboys, and he joined the Bengals in 2022. However, his first year with them was not great, and he got a score of 57.9 out of 100 from Pro Football Focus. That's not very good. With Orlando Brown Jr now on the team, the Bengals might think Collins is too expensive and not reliable enough to stay as a backup player.

2. Jeff Gunter

Being a seventh-round pick in the NFL is tough. It means you're one of the last players chosen in the draft. DE Jeff Gunter was picked as the 252nd player in the previous year's draft. He made it to the final 53-man roster last year and played in 10 games. That said, even though he stayed on the team, he was not always chosen to play in the games. Sometimes he couldn't play because of injuries, too.

When the Bengals chose Myles Murphy in the first round of this year's draft, all the defensive ends on the team knew they had to step up. Gunter might just end up on the practice squad now that the team is getting ready for the new season.

3. Trent Taylor

The Bengals can only keep seven wide receivers on the main team. Four of those spots are already taken by Tee Higgins, Ja’Marr Chase, Tyler Boyd, and Trenton Irwin. Another player, Charlie Jones, is almost guaranteed a spot if he doesn't get injured. As such, that leaves two spots for Trent Taylor, Stanley Morgan, Andrei Iosivas, and Kwamie Lassiter II to fight for.

The surprising thing is that the Bengals chose two more wide receivers in this year's draft. They picked Jones and Iosivas. People really like Iosivas, and he's becoming a favorite of the coaches and fans. So, it looks like one of those last two spots could be his. That means Taylor might carry the biggest risk of not making it to the main team.

4. Jackson Carman

Now, let's talk about right tackle Jackson Carman. He's not doing so well in the preseason games. He needs to play like he did in the playoffs last year, not like in the first preseason game against the Packers. The Bengals moved him back to the left side of the offensive line to help him perform better. Recall that he was better on the left side during college and when he started his NFL career. However, he's in competition with D’Ante Smith and Hakeem Adeniji, who are also playing well.

The fact is that Carman is not doing so well. Still, if he excels on the left side, he has a chance to stay on. If he doesn't improve a lot, he might lose his spot on the team. He could even be traded to another team that needs offensive linemen.

What to Expect from the Bengals

Even though some players are not doing well in the preseason, the Bengals still have a reason to be hopeful about 2023. They have a good team, led by their great quarterback Joe Burrow. He's been getting better and better. They also have some awesome wide receivers like Chase, Boyd, and Higgins. These guys can make big plays and help the team a lot. On defense, the Bengals have some young and talented players who've shown they can do well.

Keep in mind that the Bengals get ready for the 2023 NFL season, some players are not playing as well as they should in the preseason. La'el Collins, Jeff Gunter, Trent Taylor, and Jackson Carman are not standing out as they should be. This is disappointing to fans and coaches. But the Bengals' overall team still looks good. They have great players and the chance to succeed. As the regular season gets closer, these players need to do better to show they belong on the main team. The Bengals' journey in the 2023 NFL season is just starting. These players still have time to get better and help the team succeed.