In the past week the Cincinnati Bengals have added to their defense, signing linebackers Thomas Howard, Manny Lawson and Brandon Johnson,
safety Donte Whitner and cornerback Nate Clements. Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis is happy with the signings, even saying that those in charge "have done a great job."
Not only that. The additions of Howard, Lawson and Clements, acquisitions that replaced players that either left for free agency or have suffered significant injuries, hasn't just kept the team at the status quo. It's actually made the team better.
"We’ve really made our defense more physical and more athletic. We’ve added some guys in key spots that we wanted to add. And I’m excited about it. Guys who’ve been good pros are hungry and are having an opportunity to mesh with the guys we have."
Generally speaking the defense is hitting a home run in regards to my overall interest, as is the unknown quality of the Bengals offense. With Lawson, Carlos Dunlap, Geno Atkins, Michael Johnson and possibly Dontay Moch, the team could have a pretty good pass rush. Clements may not be the younger athletic version of himself when he came into the NFL, but he sports enough talent to keep the position strong enough.
Despite the fact Cincinnati lost their top-prized free agent with cornerback Johnathan Joseph, the team's free agency period has lifted enough of the spirits in Bengals fans to at least peak the interest into what the team is developing for the 2011 season.