We all know at this point that the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns had a trade in place to send AJ McCarron to Cleveland. That trade fell through.
According to Chris Simms, via Bleacher Report, the trade falling through also ended the Bengals possibly making one of the loudest moves in the NFL. He says the Bengals had planned to bring in quarterback Colin Kaepernick if McCarron was traded.
This is of course according to unnamed sources in the NFL, but Simms brings up some good points. The Bengals would be one of the teams to make the move to sign Kaepernick, because “[Marvin Lewis] doesn’t care what the public thinks.”
If you need proof of that, before the Eagles signed Michael Vick following his return to football in 2010 after going to prison for running a dogfighting ring, the Bengals were another team that wanted to bring him in.
That isn’t to equate Kaepernick to what Vick did, but they both have a negative public image. Of course the Browns “inability to pull off the trade ruined all that,” said Simms.
Kaepernick of course has been the center of controversy, because he decided to protest during the national anthem last season. It has now even been criticized by the President of the United States.
Kaepernick is currently seeking to sue the NFL for essentially black balling him due to his protests. Kaepernick has also donated $1 million and proceeds from his jersey sales to charity over the last year.
Simms also talks about what Kaepernick’s role with the Bengals could’ve been.
“I don’t think he’d play right away, but you’d see him in the game starting at some point before this year was over. He could help that offense out. You know it’s not a creative offense. It just lacks play making ability at this time. Kaepernick showed last year... he could make some plays by himself.”
A Kaepernick-led offense would be interesting. Andy Dalton is a mobile guy, but Kaepernick is far more of a threat outside of the pocket, and with this offensive line that it where the quarterback is spending most of their time.
That added dimension of Kaepernick being able to break containment and run for a first down if nothing is there is something the Bengals simply don’t have with Dalton.
Last season, Kaepernick threw for 2,241 yard, completed 59 percent of his passes, threw 16 touchdowns, only four interceptions and he ran for 468 yards (6.8 yards per carry) with the 49ers.
The odds the Bengals would sit Dalton are very slim though. It seems Lewis has decided to live and die by Dalton. The move obviously won’t happen now since the Bengals value McCarron so highly and he will remain on the roster this year. It is crazy to think how different the NFL landscape could be if the Browns were competent enough to execute a trade in a timely manner.
Of note, this storyline has been denied by members of the local media.
BTW - Chris Simms couldn't be more wrong - the #Bengals were not (and are not) going to sign Colin Kaepernick. #NFL— Richard Skinner (@Local12Skinny) November 8, 2017