After managing to win just six games in 2016, the Bengals knew they had work to do in the 2017 offseason. With 11 draft picks and added emphasis for improvement (ie: Marvin Lewis’ job security on the line) the Bengals knew some big moves were needed to move the team in the right direction
Before unrestricted free agency opened up, the Bengals brought in a few players. Jonathan Brown, Bryson Albright, Chris Brown, and Bene Benwikere all added some extra talent to the back-end of the roster, though, they’ll have their work cut out for them in making the roster.
During the course of the offseason, the Bengals re-signed a notable number of their free agents. Brandon LaFell, Eric Winston, T.J. Johnson, Cedric Peerman, Wallace Gilberry, and Dre Kirkpatrick were all brought back. Unfortunately, in the process the team lost Andrew Whitworth, Kevin Zeitler, Rex Burkhead, Karlos Dansby, Domata Peko, and Margus Hunt. Some of those losses were intentional as the team didn’t make an effort to re-sign players like Dansby, Zeitler and Hunt. But the loss of Whitworth was much more of an unfortunate shock.
Once free agency hit, the Bengals stayed quiet initially, as they always do, then announced the signing of 26-year old middle linebacker Kevin Minter. Uncoincidentally, the team released Rey Maualuga a week later. Andre Smith was also brought back after a year with the Minnesota Vikings. The Bengals then brought in former Jaguars defensive end Chris Smith, although via trade rather than free agency.
When the draft rolled around, the Bengals brought in 11 new players. They focused on offensive weapons early on, bringing in speedy wide receivers in John Ross (Round 1) and Josh Malone (Round 4). They also brought in the ultra talented running back, Joe Mixon (Round 2), kicker Jake Elliott of Memphis (Round 5), offensive lineman J.J. Dielman (Round 5) and tight end Mason Schreck of Buffalo (Round 7).
On the defensive side of the ball, the Bengals added defensive end Jordan Willis (Round 3), linebacker Carl Lawson (Round 4), defensive tackle Ryan Glasgow (Round 4), linebacker Jordan Evans (Round 6), and safety Brandon Wilson (Round 6).
Despite a huge need on offensive line, the Bengals only used one of their 11 picks on an offensive lineman, Dielman, the tackle/center out of Utah. Due to his versatility, there is a chance he could also fill in at guard if necessary, a spot that became a serious point of concern following Zeitler’s departure.
Moving forward, the Bengals are focusing on conditioning for the season and getting everyone on the same page for training camp. Overall, it was a very active offseason, with a lot to analyze.
What do you think, Bengals fans? Did the Bengals do well this offseason? Do you approve of the moves made?
Do you approve of what the Bengals have done so far this offseason?
This poll is closed
They did mostly well, but there were a few head-scratchers.
Not great, not terrible.
It was mostly bad, but I liked a few things.
Bad all around.