I know that a lot of fans want like that comment but I am sure most on here know that I hardly ever bite my tongue.
Baltimore will be coming off the dreaded SB hangover and Pittsburgh is getting older and both the Ravens and Steelers will have to cut some players they want to keep to fix their salary cap issues.
The BENGALS have a opportunity before them that other teams would die for. They have young talent on offense in AJ GREEN, ZEITLER, BJGE, GRESHAM, SANU and SMITH and so on. On defense we have ATKINS, DUNLAP, BURFICT and KIRKPATRICK. Young talented players who are signed to rather cheap contracts in terms of the talent they have. They will have the the most available cap space this spring than any other franchise and that is why you are hearing people like SI Peter King and other people in the business coming out and talking about the BENGALS and the opportunity they currently have before them and more important MIKE BROWN has to spend between 89-90% of whatever the cap number will be in 2013.Go back to the pro-bowl when the commentators talked about the BENGALS having the most young talent in the entire league. Youth gets you a long way but it will also get you bounced out of the playoffs early. You have to sometimes bring in that FA player that gets you over that hump. I don't mean to spend like the Redskins use to every year but just now and then for that right player whatever the cost.
For years we BENGAL fans have been on the outside looking when it comes to the most exciting part of the NFL off-season in FREE AGENCY. BENGALS brass has always said that the team would build through the draft and and if the players turn into keepers they would re-sign them.
What I hate more than anything is seeing former players that this team has drafted but leave because of $$$ and go on and star elsewhere. Watching Johnathon Joseph play for Houston the last 2 years makes me want to vomit. ZIMMER has coached him up and helped turn him into a all-pro and the past couple of seasons Joseph makes it to the pro-bowl and helped the Texans knock us out of the playoffs 2 years and running. The same can be said for Justin Smith who has turned into a beast for the 49ers.
If the BENGALS handle their business in the next 3 months we can be the alpha males in the AFC NORTH for the next handful of seasons. We can be better than both Pittsburgh and the SB Champions Baltimore Ravens.
1. Re-sign ANDRE SMITH who has proven over the past 2 seasons that he is one of the better RT in the NFL despite taking a gun into a airport which is so dumb it had to be a accident.
2. Slap the franchise tag on MICHAEL JOHNSON and let Robert Geathers go. The BENGALS will hopefully learn from Robert Geathers and not give a big contract to a player with only 1 big year. Most fans are hoping that Geathers is let go. If MJ is the real deal you can pay him next year and if he isn't you can pay him NFL starter money and not elite money because I believe he benefits a lot from GENO ATKINS taking up double teams. ADAM JONES and TERRENCE NEWMAN both deserve to be back on 1 year deals with maybe JONES getting 2-3 because of his youth. It would be good for KIRKPATRICK to learn from a pro like NEWMAN for another year because he was hurt for the entire year.
3. Either pay ATKINS or GREEN new deals because they deserve it. I would go with ATKINS because it's only year 2 going into year 3 for GREEN. I know some are thinking about DALTON but he has done nothing as of yet to deserve a new deal. If he is a franchise QB let him show you. Otherwise I let him play his contract out and see what happens. I am not sold on DALTON as a franchise QB while others might disagree with me.
4. Sign THOMAS HOWARD and the GILBERRY kid to 1 year deals and see what they can do. HOWARD is coming off a horrible injury and no one will know what he can do until training camp. Let Rey Maualuga play for someone else and draft the best LB on the board at 21. If it's Te'o or Ogletree or even the kid from Oregon you take him. You can bring in another mid round pick at LB in rounds 4-6. You pray to the football gods that in the second round that either Travis Frederick or Barrett Jones is available and you race to turn in their cards because this line is a C away from being one of the best. I prefer FREDERICK because I think the kid is going to be a elite C in the NFL who is bigger than your average C but this kid has great feet and will put defenders on their ass in the run game.
5. AJ GREEN needs someone on the opposite side of the field who can take the top off defenses in the AFC NORTH. I don't care if that player comes from free agency or the draft but it needs to happen. I love Mike Wallace in orange and black but most fans on here don't. In the draft their are players like Tavon Austin and Robert Woods and others but I believe those 2 are the best fit. This team needs a home run hitter opposite of BJGE because he runs like he is underwater and that is no joke. I love him but he is slow and that is why New England made no effort to re-sign him. In terms of overall speed on offense the BENGALS are horribly slow and that is part of the reason why GRUDEN has made it public that he wants a faster RB. I would love Reggie Bush because of everything he brings to the table but once again most fans either don't like it or simply don't think that BROWN will pony up and pay Bush starter money that he is looking for.
This team is set up so perfect this off-season that it's almost unfair. It's time for this organzation to show the league that they are ready to compete and play with the elite but that will not happen from just drafting new blood and bringing in fringe players in FA that are only slightly better upgrades from the players you had the year before. While you are better than the year before the talent gap still falls short of the better teams in the AFC. This of course equals getting punched in the mouth by the Texans.
I meant what I said above that if this organazation does not capitalize on this opportunity we don't deserve to ever be true SUPER BOWL CONTEDERS. Opportunities like this come once a decade or so if you are lucky.
2013 can finally be our year!