Targets, plans & choices this offseason
The Cincinnati Bengals’ free company in 2023 figures to be fascinating to observe. On prime of going to the AFC Championship Sport in back-to-back seasons, the Bengals rank near the top of the NFL in salary cap space this offseason.
For sure, it’ll be fascinating to see what gamers are the Bengals’ free company targets and the way the Bengals’ offseason plans unfold.
Bengals free company 2023
The one caveat is that among the best players available in free agency this offseason are Cincinnati’s personal gamers. That might probably throw a wrench within the Bengals’ free company for 2023. However, the staff is in an enviable place in 2023, so let’s take a better have a look at the Bengals’ offseason plans, particularly the Bengals’ free company 2023 targets.
Cornerback appears to be Cincinnati’s greatest offseason want, particularly with Eli Apple and Tre Flowers changing into free brokers. If the Bengals need to fill that gap and improve their expertise at that place, they should go after James Bradberry, who’s arguably the highest nook out there this yr.
Bradberry performed a key function in serving to the Eagles get to the Tremendous Bowl and was a Second-Staff All-Professional in 2022. His controversial maintain within the Tremendous Bowl apart, Bradberry affords the very best likelihood for any staff to improve at nook this offseason, so the Bengals may be smart to make use of a few of their cap house to signal him.
Regardless of a strong protection in 2022, no person on the Bengals had greater than 8.5 sacks. In truth, solely two gamers reached 4 sacks on the season.
For sure, an edge-rusher is excessive on Cincinnati’s listing of wants with Yannick Ngakoue being the best match. He’s had a minimal of eight sacks yearly of his profession and has totaled 19.5 sacks over the previous two seasons. At age 28, Ngakoue is way from previous his prime and is a secure guess to enhance Cincinnati’s cross rush and provides their protection one other weapon.
Orlando Brown Jr.
If the Bengals are going to get previous the Chiefs subsequent season, signing considered one of Kansas Metropolis’s prime free brokers might be one approach to do it. That’s the reason Orlando Brown Jr. might be an apparent goal for the Bengals this offseason, though it’ll take a considerable amount of cash to make it occur.
After the Bengals allowed 44 sacks in 16 video games this previous season, they should proceed to enhance their offensive line. Plus, La’el Collins is taken into account a probable cap casualty for the Bengals, opening the door for the Bengals to make an offensive deal with considered one of their prime priorities in free company.
Each Vonn Bell and Jessie Bates, Cincinnati’s beginning safeties this season, are set to hit free company this offseason. The Bengals used a first-round choose final season on Dax Hill, who seems to be poised to exchange Bates, however retaining a veteran security like Bell may be a smart transfer given the state of the Cincinnati secondary.
Bell is probably not a bonafide star, however he’s been a gradual a part of the Cincinnati protection over the past three years and can be a much more cost-effective participant to retain than Bates.
As talked about, the Bengals can be in search of pass-rushers this offseason. In the event that they’re prepared to take a bit of little bit of an opportunity on somebody, Jadeveon Clowney might be a very good possibility.
The previous prime total choose is coming off a nasty yr in Cleveland, though he’s solely 30 and will have one thing left within the tank. If nothing else, he ought to really feel like he has one thing to show and was a Professional-Bowler as just lately as 2018.
At this stage in his profession, Clowney gained’t demand some huge cash for a one-year deal, which is why the Bengals may think about using a bit of little bit of their cap house on a part-time participant with some upside at a place of want.
Very like Clowney, Justin Houston is a veteran who the Bengals may usher in for a modest amount of cash this offseason to provide them one other pass-rusher.
Houston wouldn’t want to begin however fairly present depth and play part-time. Very like Clowney, they’d even be signing him away from a division rival, which is an additional benefit.
Extra importantly, Houston tallied 9.5 sacks as a part-time participant with the Ravens final season, so he can nonetheless get after the quarterback and will probably make a significant distinction on the Cincinnati protection.
The working again place can be curious to observe this offseason. Joe Mixon has been talked about as a candidate to be lower whereas Samaje Perine and Trayveon Williams are each free brokers, leaving the backfield empty if Mixon is certainly lower.
That makes re-signing Perine an intriguing chance for the Bengals. He’s confirmed to be a gradual backup and a helpful a part of the passing sport. Whether or not they preserve Mixon or use draft capital to discover a new working again, bringing again Perine to function the backup working again might be an neglected however essential transfer by Cincinnati this offseason.
There’s nothing incorrect with the manufacturing the Bengals acquired from Hayden Hurst this previous season. But it surely’d even be truthful to say that the Bengals can do higher.
With Hurst set to develop into a free agent, Cincinnati must be inspired to discover the opposite free-agent tight ends out there. Dalton Schultz is arguably the very best of the bunch and a safer guess than Hurst after what he’s achieved in Dallas over the past three seasons.
Schultz is each youthful and a extra confirmed participant than Hurst, so if the Bengals need to use their cap house to buy on the prime of the tight finish market, Schultz must be the goal.