Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis addressed members of the local Cincinnati media on Tuesday morning and he shared his thoughts on the happenings through the first week of free agency. Both Joe Reedy of The Cincinnati Enquirer and Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com gave us some good soundbites via Twitter this morning. What has been coming out of the interview has been some interesting stuff.
Lewis was asked extensive questions about the Rey Maualuga re-signing that occurred on Monday and reiterated that he doesn't expect a change in the linebacker positions, even with some of the struggles that were seen in the middle last year. Even still, he left a little wiggle room for that to change with some "I don't know's" about the subject.
He was then asked his thoughts on re-signing two cornerbacks who are pegged as top offseason priorities, in Terence Newman and Adam Jones. Some might argue that Jones is the more valuable commodity because of his ability in the return game, but the team has pegged them as near-must-haves. Lewis sounded optimistic about the progress of each defensive back returning:
Last we heard on each of these players, things were moving toward a finalization of deals, in one respect or another. Jones hasn't seen much interest around the league and has subtly made it known that he wants to return to Cincinnati (check his Twitter account and the re-tweets he has done from Bengals fans asking to stay). Indications are that they are close. Newman, on the other hand, is debating between the Raiders and the Bengals. The decision could come as soon as today, based on a tweet that Newman sent out yesterday, but it looks more like he will decide at the end of the week.
Newman employs Ben Dogra as his agent, and we've noticed a surprising lack of multi-tasking in regards to his negotiation skills by the super-agent this offseason--particularly with Bengals players like Newman and offensive tackle Andre Smith.