Every good offense needs a solid left tackle. By bringing in former Bengal Andrew Whitworth, the Rams expect to have stabilized one of the most important positions on the field.
Dre Kirkpatrick likes his home games on the river for the team coached by the role model named Marvin Lewis and he likes to play in Paul Guenther’s East Coast edge defense and he likes walking his Rottweiler through his village even though figures from pro sports are few and far between in tiny Terrace Park on Cincinnati’s eastern fringe.
The loss of Pro Bowl left tackle Andrew Whitworth and starting right guard Kevin Zeitler leaves the Bengals with a projected 148 NFL starts among the five spots and that includes a combined four at left tackle, right tackle and right guard. Winston, who has been a backup in Cincinnati since he arrived late in the 2014 play-off run, made two of his 125 NFL starts last season.
Andy Dalton is the captain on the bridge and while there is plenty of turbulence up there he doesn’t see any icebergs despite losing his two best pass protectors on Thursday after a season the Bengals allowed their quarterback to get hit with the seventh most sacks in the league. “There’s no panic on my end,” Dalton said Thursday from Dallas. “I feel like we‘ve got a lot of talent. We just have to put it all together.”
We’re pleased, obviously, to be here today, with Dre’s signing. It’s a very exciting day for us, for him. We’re really pleased to be able to have Dre be back here, continue his career here and hopefully at one point finish his career here in Cincinnati. But finishing it with a couple championships is what he’d prefer. He’s been a great, young talent for us. He’s worked his tail off year in and year out to eventually rise to this level.
Bengals cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick isn't known for his patience, so the wait to get his new contract done in Cincinnati was agonizing for him. Kirkpatrick had several suitors but ultimately signed a five-year deal to remain with the Bengals on the first day of free agency. He implied that he left money on the table with other suitors to stay in Cincinnati, a place he said now feels like home.
Two e-mails from the Bengals head trainer are under new scrutiny today. WashingtonPost.com published an article Thursday night ("NFL abuse of painkillers and other drugs described in court filings") based on "sealed court documents contained in a federal lawsuit filed by former players," which Post reporters reviewed.
AFC North Bytes
NFL Network's Mike Garafolo brings the latest information on the Browns free agency moves and if the team will make a play for Patriots QB Jimmy Garoppolo.
Linebacker Lawrence Timmons is on the move, as the former Pittsburgh Steelers star signed with the Miami Dolphins, the team announced on Friday. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the two-year deal is worth $12 million with $11 million guaranteed. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport confirmed. Timmons recently completed his 10th NFL season with the Steelers, who selected him with the No. 15 overall pick in the 2007 NFL draft.
Terrelle Pryor made his successful transition to wide receiver in Cleveland. Now he'll try to see if he can make it work in Washington. Per ESPN's Adam Schefter, Pryor signed a one-year deal with the Redskins. Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio added the deal will be worth $8 million. According to Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports, reported the contract contains a $6 million base salary and $2 million signing bonus.
Tight end Dennis Pitta and the Baltimore Ravens agreed to a restructured contract Friday, according to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo. Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports confirmed the move. Pitta, 31, was initially scheduled to earn base salaries of $5.5 million with $7.7 million cap hits each of the next two seasons before becoming an unrestricted free agent in 2019.
Money is flying all over the place in free agency. Who deserves high marks, and who will come to regret their decisions? Let's break down each big deal.
The New Orleans Saints reached an agreement Friday to trade wide receiver Brandin Cooks to the New England Patriots. According to ESPN's Dianna Russini, the Patriots will receive Cooks and a fourth-round pick (No. 118 overall) in exchange for their first-round pick (No. 32 overall) and a third-round pick (No. 103 overall).
The Raiders have fewer needs than usual, but they’re still trying to upgrade the roster via free agency. The latest arrival is veteran offensive lineman Marshall Newhouse. Via Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, it’s a two-year deal.
The NFL was dealing with an epic hangover Friday. It hardly remembers what it did on Thursday, but the shenanigans that unfolded on the first official day of free agency caused the league to sleep through its alarm clock. And when it finally showed up to work, an upset stomach and a pounding headache made it difficult to get things done.