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Nate Clements might be the Bengals cornerback closest to securing a starting job.
It started all the way back in rookie minicamp with the arrival of Dre Kirkpatrick to his new team and will continue well into the preseason—who will be the Bengals' starters in the secondary?
Just as in the wide receiver battle, the Bengals have no shortage of talented players vying for all manner of starting and situational jobs in what is likely going to be a big-nickel-heavy defensive approach this year.
At cornerback, Leon Hall anticipates being ready for late-July training camp, the rookie Kirkpatrick has been shaky and Nate Clements, Brandon Ghee, Adam Jones, Jason Allen and Terence Newman will all be trying to capitalize on Hall's continued recover and Kirkpatrick's obvious greenness.
Clements wasn't on the field much in OTAs and minicamps as he dealt with a pulled muscle. At this point, however, he's the only front-runner to be a starter, leaving the other five to fight it out. Jones, Allen and Newman got most of the OTA reps, which helps their causes immensely.
At safety, the Bengals are still determining who will start alongside Reggie Nelson. Rookie George Iloka impressed early, and he'll be competing with Taylor Mays, Robert Sands and Jeromy Miles. Mays has gotten the most reps thus far, but the job is not yet his.
We all anticipated this would be a major battle, and it appears now that OTAs and minicamp have closed, it remains as such headed into training camp.