Apr 27, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer speaks during the press conference at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE
Terence Newman came to Cincinnati without many other options. Not among the big names of the free agent frenzy, Newman, despite two Pro Bowl appearances with one as recent as 2009, found that most NFL teams felt the same way the Dallas Cowboys did--they didn't need him. The verdict was out. Newman was washed up and over the hill; just a shell of his former self. Finally, he signed with Cincinnati in April, but for not much money and without a guaranteed roster spot.
Defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, however, did not buy into the negative speculation. Zimmer had previously coached Newman while the two were in Dallas from 2003-2006 and knew what the pro bowler had to offer. According to Paul Dehner Jr. of CBS Rapid Reports, Zimmer still can't understand why Newman was still available in April.
DC Mike Zimmer used his relationship as a coordinator in Dallas with CB Terence Newman to lure the free agent to Cincinnati after he was released by the Cowboys. Midway through OTAs, Zimmer's still wondering why the 33-year-old was available. "I like him," Zimmer said. "I can't figure out what was wrong with him. I've been watching seven days now."
It's hard not to take Mike Zimmer at his word. This is the same guy who called Bobby Petrino a "gutless b****ard" and was turned away from the Miami Dolphins head coaching position for being "too blunt and honest". His straightforwardness is documented.
Newman's success is certainly welcome news given the recent state of the cornerback in Cincinnati. There is no such thing as too much depth and talent, and if any man can figure out how to get the most out of a talent positional log-jam, it is Mike Zimmer (see: 2011 Cincinnati Bengals defensive line).