Bengals rookie receiver Ja’Marr Chase had three drops against Washington on Friday night. After the game, Cincinnati coach Zac Taylor was asked about Chase’s miscues.
“We just expect our receivers to catch the ball, it’s as simple as that,” Taylor told reporters. “I don’t attribute it to any rhythm, the ball’s coming at you, catch it and that’s what we need to accomplish.”
So are the drops by the fifth overall pick in the draft concerning?
“We just got to continue working on it,” Taylor said. “It’s key that our receivers, the great job focus on catching the ball. He’s getting better every day and a lot of the details, and we’ll just keep looking for improvement.”
The team didn’t make Chase available to reporters after the game (if they did, his comments weren’t transcribed and distributed). Quarterback Brandon Allen spoke to reporters, and he had praise for the rookie.
“I talked to Ja’Marr, he’s a good player,” Allen said. “He’s still getting his feet wet with the game experience in the NFL. I’ve seen him make some unbelievable plays in practice that will translate well. It will. He’ll make some easy ones and he’ll make some hard ones as well. I’m not worried about him. I know what he can do and what he will do once he gets going.”
It may take some time for Chase to get going, given that he didn’t play last year. And that’s OK; the Bengals shouldn’t reasonably be thinking about getting to the postseason this year, not in a ridiculously top-heavy division and conference. Chase doesn’t need to explode in 2021. If it happens in 2022, it could be right on time.