Taking a look at a handful of former Bengals players that recently left Cincinnati; though we're not addressing everyone.
+ Despite signing a one-year deal worth $2.1 million during the offseason, Vikings wide receiver Jerome Simpson could watch his playing time decrease significantly. Minnesota added Tennessee wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson during the first round, who the Vikings believe possess a similar skill-set as the recently traded Percy Harvin. Over a month before that, Minnesota signed free agent receiver Greg Jennings to a $45 million contract during free agency.
Simpson is coming off a one-year deal worth $2 million -- though only $800,000 accounted for his base salary -- which turned out to be a disappointment -- only 26 receptions for 274 yards receiving, losing more fumbles (1) than touchdowns scored (0). Now he's primed to be a third-receiver on an offense highlighted Adrian Peterson and a running game that will use recently acquired fullback Jerome Felton and his $7.5 million contract.
+ The second part of the two-man wide receiver upgrade project from the 2008 NFL draft, Andre Caldwell, is entering the final year of a two-year deal. Leaving Cincinnati for Denver last year, Caldwell caught one pass for 18 yards receiving in eight games with the Broncos. Making things more complicated for Caldwell is Denver signing Wes Welker, upgrading the Broncos wide receiver roster that already includes Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker and Brandon Stokley.
Caldwell recently took to twitter, calling out Peyton Manning, who took Welker, Thomas and Decker to Duke University for an offseason practice session. "No invite to Duke to run routes and catch passes," Caldwell tweeted. "I took it personal."
+ After being traded to the New York Giants for a fifth-round selection (that ended up being safety George Iloka), Rivers missed five games with a hamstring issue, strained calf and a bruised knee that he suffered during a car accident. After posting only 34 tackles as a backup to Michael Boley, his lowest since 2008 where he missed nine games with a broken jaw, the Giants re-signed Rivers to a one-year deal worth $715,000. The former Bengals first-round pick will be facing a training camp battle this year.
+ One year into a five-year contract worth $20.5 million, the Cleveland Browns, transforming on a base 3-4 defense this season, absorbed a $1.5 million penalty by releasing Rucker in February. Rucker eventually found a home in Arizona, signing a one-year deal worth $840,000. Currently figuring as a backup to defensive ends Calais Campbell and Darnell Dockett, Rucker helps improve the depth on the Cardinals defensive line, resuming a rotational effort that helped him thrive in Cincinnati.
+ Strangely the Dallas Cowboys signed former Bengals offensive guard Nate Livings to a five-year deal worth $19 million. To his credit, Livings played well in Dallas, listed as the sixth-best left guard last season. However, despite taking a pay cut to help Dallas' salary cap situation, Calvin Watkins with ESPNDallas.com suggests that Livings could be a surprise cut.
+ Bengals that signed with new teams in 2013: Quarterback Bruce Gradkowski, defensive tackle Pat sims, running back Brian Leonard, kicker Josh Brown and linebackers Manny Lawson and Dan Skuta.
+ Former Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer worked his way out of Oakland by refusing a $3 million reduction in his base salary. Oakland traded Palmer and a 2013 seventh-round pick in exchange for a 2013 sixth-round selection and a conditional seventh-round pick during the 2014 NFL draft. Despite playing in a complicated division led by the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers, Palmer still faces a better situation than he did in Oakland.
With one of the league's best receivers in Larry Fitzgerald, Palmer will take snaps behind a questionable offensive line that's growing in momentum. Left tackle Levi Brown and center Lyle Sendlein will return from injury and first-round draft selection Jonathan Cooper should be a significant upgrade at guard.
+ Assistant General Manager for the Baltimore Ravens was very impressed with the Bengals draft.
+ Ditka "sticks to his guns about Tebow", who Forbes polled as the most influential athlete, while Mario Williams sues his ex-fiance to $785,000 engagement ring back, and Browns rookie Armonty Bryant was arrested and charged with a DUI. Jesus Christ.
+ Oh, and the media is back to making up stories. After Vikings punter Chris Kluwe, who publicly supports gay marriage, was released on Monday, Yahoo! Sports writes that the move sends a "message that gay-marriage talk is not tolerated in the NFL." Les Carpenter expressed an emotion of confusion throughout his article, adding to a growing number of columnists that somehow relate real-life society issues to sports.
+ A USA Today article called Terrell Owens a "talented amateur bowler." During the first round of the USBC Open Championships, Owens' average score was 158. If by talented they mean, guy-that-can-get-a-strike-here-and-there, then sure.
+ CEO Mike Dee says that the Dolphins future in Miami is "bleak" after failing to secure public funding for a $400 million renovation project at Sun Life Stadium.
"We cannot do this without a private-public partnership," Dee said in an interview. "At this time we have no intention of investing more."
Don't expect owner Steve Ross to move the team.
"I don't think it's an option for [73-year-old owner] Steve Ross, but for a subsequent owner? The Dolphins are one of the only franchises in the National Football League that do not have a long-term lease with their community," Dee said.
+ Beyond hilarious.