Dalton: Bengals WRs are going to 'surprise'

CINCINNATI -- Everyone believes the biggest weakness on the Bengals offense is at the No. 2 wide receiver position. That is, everyone except those working at mandatory minicamp at Paul Brown Stadium.

"We’ve got talented guys who understand the game of football," Bengals quaterback Andy Dalton said Tuesday of the receivers auditioning for the starting spot next to A.J. Green. "Maybe they haven’t played very much. But they’re going to surprise a lot of people."

The Bengals didn't sign a receiver in free agency and didn't draft one in the first two rounds despite parting ways with Jerome Simpson and Andre Caldwell, who ranked in the top three in catches by Cincinnati wide receivers last season.

Bengals coach Marvin Lewis expressed confidence in the receivers competing for the starting job, singling out Brandon Tate, Mohamed Sanu, Armon Binns and Ryan Whalen. Lewis doesn't understand the concern over the lack of experience at wide receiver this year after what the team went through at the position last year.

"I still can't figure that question out," Lewis said. "Those are one of those things that make you go hmmm."

Once I got the C+C Music Factory reference out of my head, I came away impressed by the speed and explosiveness by this group at Tuesday's two-hour practice. At this point, I would say Tate has the slight edge over Sanu and Binns for the spot.

Still, Tate, Sanu, Binns combined for no catches for the Bengals last season.

"We’ve got a lot of guys who haven’t proven anything but we have a lot of talent. That’s the thing that’s exciting," Dalton said. "It doesn’t matter who is in there, you know they’re going to be doing the right thing. We’ve got a really good group. I’m excited for this year because they’re going to go out and show everybody what we’re able to do."