NFL News and Rumors

Ja’Marr Chase’s Drop Struggles Could Have Major Consequences

Adam Taylor McKillop
Ja'Marr Chase's drop struggles show him falling down the Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver depth chart.
Ja'Marr Chase's drop struggles show him falling down the Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver depth chart. / Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images

Despite not playing a single snap of football during the 2020 season, wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase was an easy selection for the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2021 NFL Draft. Cincinnati took Chase as the first wideout off the board with dreams around reuniting him with his former college quarterback Joe Burrow.

The excitement hasn't wavered, but Chase has shown obvious signs of rust throughout Bengals' training camp — most notably, in the form of dropped passes. And, the drops have now become significant enough that Chase is reportedly at risk of falling down the Bengals' WR depth chart.

Bengals Roster 2021

After a number of higher-profile drops in Cincinnati's Week 2 Preseason contest on Friday night and again on Sunday during practice, Paul Dehner Jr. of The Athletic reported this development on the depth chart. According to Dehner, Chase's drops will see him losing early-season snaps to fourth-year wideout Auden Tate.

Dehner even asked Bengals head coach Zac Taylor about the situation, to which he offered "no denial but a long-winded acknowledgment that Chase has a ways to go."

“We have a lot of places we can turn for the help to as [Ja'Marr Chase] comes along... And then you got guys like Auden Tate and Mike Thomas, who have been in this system for a long time... So again, we feel fortunate there to have that depth at all the skill groups, to where you can take a young guy and let him acclimate to life in the league. His skills will show off here pretty soon.”

Zac Taylor

Chase still enters his rookie campaign with sky-high expectations. It's not time to hit the panic button yet, but his drops appear to have forced the Bengals' hand when it comes to early-season decisions around the WR depth chart.

Currently, Chase owns +2000 odds to win the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award on FanDuel Sportsbook.

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Adam Taylor McKillop is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Adam Taylor also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username atmckillop. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.