The 47 players on the field for Cincinnati Bengals rookie camp Friday weren’t the only ones experiencing things in a new way.
The coaching staff, with two new coordinators and a handful of new assistants, was getting its first look at how practices will run while the rookies were getting their first experience with an NFL playbook.
“It was a really important day for us to get out here and coach and work together,” said Bill Lazor, who is in his first full season as offensive coordinator and working with new assistants in Frank Pollack (offensive line), Alex Van Pelt (quarterbacks) and Bob Bicknell (wide receivers).
“As much as you talk about it, until you’re in a full practice, you don’t know how it’s going to go,” Lazor added. “I’m really excited about how our staff did. There was a lot of newness.”
Head coach Marvin Lewis said he’s been impressed with how both Lazor and new defensive coordinator Teryl Austin run things during pratice, both from what he’s seen in Phase II of OTAs and the Friday session with the rookies.
While Lazor worked as the interim coordinator for the final 14 games last year, Austin has been on staff a little more than four months.
“He’s been very good with his ability to instill in the defensive players what he’s looking to see them do all the time,” Lewis said of Austin. “And his ability to coach the coaches from the front to the back is really important. I think that’s a key part of that key part of that coordinator position is to have an understanding of what you want to see done footwork wise from the front people all the way to the back end. Teryl has that kind of experience and you see it out there. I’m excited about that. I think that’s a great strength of his.”
The three-day rookie camp continues Saturday.