Free agency opens at 12:01 EST, in just over 5 hours. Earlier today, the Bengals dealt with the rest of their restricted free agents and terminated Laveranues Coles' contract. This means he does not become an "unrestricted" free agent and is free to talk to teams already; it also means the Bengals won't get any compensatory picks next year because he was cut, not released. Use this thread to discuss breaking news, which I'll do my best to keep updated throughout the evening. I'm watching Joe Reedy, other Twitter sources and ESPN closely, but if I miss something, yell at me and talk about it here!
Update #1: @joereedy says the Bengals are not close to retaining any potential UFAs. That means Bobbie Williams and Tank Johnson are unlikely to re-sign before midnight. They'll test the market.
Update #2 (11:17 EST): @OGOchocinco: The Jets just got @cromartie31 which pairs him with @revis24, i have my own OCNN surprise comin soon (sic)
Update #3 (12:02 EST): The Baltimore Sun's Ravens blog reports that talks with Kevin Walter may be serious. Bengals fans have discussed him as a new WR option. Hope the Ravens don't burn us if he's a top priority for the Bengals, and I hope Walter isn't vindictive.
Also, Florio has "rankings" of offensive free agents based on projected cost. T.O. comes in at 5 mill, Walter at 7 mill. Here's PFT's cash defense dollar-based FA rankings.
Update #4 (1:09 EST): I give up. Nothing Bengals-related is going to happen tonight. At least we had some fun! The Bears have been very active with Julius Peppers, deal is could be done by Friday afternoon. The Ravens have been linked to Marshall and Walter, and also TE Brandon Manumaleuna. Seahawks have been linked with Marshall and Rolle. Dunta Robinson to Atlanta is expected to be done on Friday too. Here's to a more interesting weekend.
Final Update (2:04 EST): Leigh Bodden, a guy on my free agent wishlist and one of the best UFA CB available, is not generating any excitement in Cincinnati. Joe Reedy told me that there's nothing so much as simmering in Cincinnati tonight, and a NFP report has the Steelers, Texans, Seahawks and Patriots interested in the corner. In the wee hours of the morning, Schefter tweeted than the Panthers cut DT Maake Kemoeatu. Het ore his ACL but is expected to be ready for training camp. I wouldn't mind giving him a look, as he constantly commands double teams. Nate Burleson also signed in Detroit.
Sadly, at 2:48 EST Joe Reedy told me that the rumors about Ben Watson interest are just rumors.