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Bengals hoping to develop A.J. Green's route running

  • By Brian McIntyre NFL.com
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A.J. Green caught 65 passes for 1,057 yards and seven touchdowns in 2011, becoming the first rookie receiver to earn a Pro Bowl berth since 2003 and debuting on the NFL Network's "Top 100: Players of 2012" list at No. 77.

According to Dan Pompei of the National Football Post, one area the Cincinnati Bengals are looking for Green to improve upon is his route running.

"He's always been such a good receiver that he could beat guys a lot of times just by running around them," Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden said. "There were times last year when he wasn't as detailed as he should be in terms of getting off the line, his depths and his route running. I think some of those routes will be cleaned up. He's working on it. He's so receptive to it. Has a ways to go, but he wants to be great. With the talent he has, throw in the desire he has, the work ethic he has, and the sky is the limit."

Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, a former Stanford wide receiver who was selected 150 spots behind Green in the 2011 NFL Draft, was critical of Green's route running following the Bengals' 34-12 win last October.

"I would say he's probably one of the most overrated receivers out there," Sherman told Curtis Crabtree of KJR-AM (via Danny O'Neil of The Seattle Times). "He wasn't anything special. (Andy) Dalton was a good quarterback. He makes good decisions, but A.J. Green is just a lot of noise talking and bad routes."

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