The Cincinnati Bengals were on the verge of hitting the start of NFL free agency without having re-signed any of their unrestricted free agents to.
In an effort to shore up the versatility of their offensive line, the Bengals took one of their priorities off the free-agent market Thursday when they agreed to terms with guard-center Mike Pollak.
Agent Ken Zuckerman said he had an agreement with the club, which has yet to be finalized with the signed paperwork. Alex Marvez of Fox Sports reported a three-year agreement.
"I don’t think there’s any question there would have been a market for Mike, but he felt really comfortable playing for Paul," said Zuckerman of Bengals offensive line coach Paul Alexander. "He likes the fit and Paul’s approach and is happy about going back there."
Because of injuries to both Kevin Zeitler and Clint Boling at different points last year, Pollak got extensive playing time. He got five starts and had a +6.2 grade by Pro Football Focus. He can play both guard spots and will solidify what was one of the best offensive lines in the league in 2013.
Pollak played just one game with the Carolina Panthers in 2012 because of a shoulder injury, but he was a regular starter during his first four years in the NFL. Pollak played for the Indianapolis Colts in all of those years and started 41 games at guard after the team made him a second-round pick in 2008.
This is a great signing for the Bengals, and if Boling isn't ready for the start of the 2014 season due to last year's torn ACL, Pollak could be the opening day starting left guard.