Sunday evening, while watching The Matrix and digesting quite possibly the greatest steak I had ever grilled (and I'm a freaking grill master.... so that's saying something), I was perusing my Twitter feed when I witnessed a Bengals-related conversation between CBS Sports' Pete Prisco and NFL Network's Albert Breer.
They were discussing defensive end Michael Johnson, and to a lesser extent, defensive tackle Pat Sims.
With 11.5 sacks, the second most on the team, Johnson picked the right time to have a breakout season. Since the NFL is a passing league, players that are able to rush the passer successfully are tough to find and when they are found, they're expensive to keep. Johnson has earned the big paycheck that is sure to come his way.
When it comes to Sims, a player that can help stop the run, especially in short-yardage, or goal-line situations is also worth keeping around as well.
Prisco may or may not be dead on about Johnson being the top free agent hitting the market, but if he's not on top he's damn close to it. That just makes it all the more important to make sure he spends the next several years in a Bengals uniform.