It appears Jake Kumerow’s time with the Cincinnati Bengals has come to an end.
On Friday, the team announced that Kumerow had been waived from injured reserve (IR). That means he’ll become an NFL free agent if he clears waivers.
Kumerow, who is classified as a first-year player in 2017, joined the Bengals as a college free agent signee out of Wisconsin-Whitewater in 2015. He was on the Bengals’ practice squad for nearly all of the past two seasons (he was on the 53-player roster and inactive for one game in 2016).
However, Kumerow suffered an ankle injury early in this year’s training camp, which led to him being released under the category of Waived/Injured on Aug. 9. He then reverted to the Bengals’ IR list on Aug. 10 after clearing waivers.
Though Kumerow had become a preseason fan-favorite, he had virtually no chance at making the 53-man roster this year among a crowded wide receiver group. The Bengals have A.J. Green, Brandon LaFell, Tyler Boyd, Cody Core, John Ross, Josh Malone and Alex Erickson all on the roster ahead of him.
The son of former Dolphins first-round pick Erik Kumerow and cousin of Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa, Kumerow had to move down to Division III football to help kickstart a college career after he couldn’t see the field at Illinois as a walk-on in 2010. He waited to make an impact there, but his last two years at Wisconsin-Whitewater showed he could play football at a high level.
In his junior year, Kumerow emerged as a big receiving threat with 77 receptions and set the school record with 1,331 receiving yards and 19 touchdowns. He followed that up with a successful senior season, compiling 66 catches for 1,116 yards and 14 scores. In those final two seasons, his team won back to back Division III national titles.
Good luck to Kumerow wherever his football journey takes him next.