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Would the Cincinnati Bengals Be Interested in Plaxico Burress?

We here at Cincy Jungle aren't big into starting rumors, but sometimes we like to consider different possibilities. For instance, we considered the possibility of the Bengals obtaining Ohio State running back "Boom" Herron via the supplemental draft earlier today. That doesn't mean it will happen, but it could.

Here's another possibility, for you to consider, and while it's far less likely to come true than the Herron thing, it's much more interesting.

Could the Bengals obtain Plaxico Burress for the 2011 season?

Here are the facts:

  • Burress is about to be released from prison after spending just under two years behind bars for accidentally shooting himself in the leg in a New York night club.
  • Many believe the Bengals will part ways with Chad Ochocinco before the 2011 season begins rather than pay him the $6 million they owe him for the single season.
  • If they do release Ochocinco, Andre Caldwell would be the most experienced wide receiver on the team (he has less than 1,000 total receiving yards
  • If they release Ochocinco, Jerome Simpson would likely be the No. 2 receiver, playing opposite of A.J. Green. However, he has only had two good games in his three-year career and could be a one-hit-wonder.
  • The Bengals could likely sign Burress for a cheap price (at least cheaper than $6 million for a year), giving them at least one experienced and talented receiver for a year.

Burress hasn't played football since 2008, unless he's been running routes for Paul Crewe on a football team comprised of inmates playing against the guards (I love pop culture references), but in his eight year career, he's caught 505 passes for 7,845 yards and 55 touchdowns.

Had he not gone to prison, for shooting himself in the leg, he would be entering his 11th season as a wide receiver in the NFL and likely would be considering retirement within the next few years. That alone would lower his price, but the fact that he hasn't played NFL football since 2008 should make him even cheaper. That combined with his talent could make him a hot commodity for any NFL team that could use a wide receiver, despite his age and lack of NFL experience over the last two years.

If the Bengals decide to let Ochocinco leave Cincinnati, saving half of the $6 million they owe him, like many believe they will, they could still be a little weary of starting a rookie wide receiver and Simpson, who doesn't have much more experience, with a rookie quarterback. They may look to the free agent market for an experienced wide receiver to play alongside Simpson and Green for just a year to help Green, Simpson and Dalton get their feet wet in a new system.

If they decide to take that path, they may still be able to save enough money from releasing Ochocinco to attempt and re-sigin Cedric Benson or Johnathan Joseph.

I personally think that the odds of the Bengals signing Burress are extremely low. However, it doesn't really matter what I think. What do you think?