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NFL free Agency 2018: Top tight ends hitting the open market

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If the Bengals and Tyler Eifert parted ways could the Bengals find a replacement in free agency?

Arizona Cardinals v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

One of the biggest decisions the Bengals will face this offseason is whether to bring back Tyler Eifert.

Marvin Lewis has already said he would like to bring the tight end back, but there are a lot of variables that could affect what happens. The question becomes what can the Bengals do if Eifert doesn’t end up with the Bengals in 2018?

Sure, Tyler Kroft performed well, but he was hardly a consistent threat in the passing game outside of the red zone. The Bengals could look at free agency to fill the enormous hole left if Eifert leaves.

Here is a look at the top tight ends the Bengals could be looking at in free agency.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins (Jets)

The Bengals have been known for trying to bring in a player who has struggled on another team and giving them a second chance. Seferian-Jenkins has had a rough go with the Jets since being picked up after the Buccaneers cut the former second-round pick following an arrest. He hasn’t really had a good quarterback for most of his two seasons with the Jets. He is also relatively young, as he will be 26 in September.

Seferian-Jenkins has an athleticism the Bengals need from the position that they miss whenever Eifert is out, and he could be lured in by a huge role if Eifert leaves.

Jimmy Graham (Seahawks)

This is a bit of a long shot, but Graham has hit the decline of his career it seems. He is still a huge red-zone threat, but he doesn’t quite have that big play ability that you think of when you think of Graham as a player. He is probably the only player on this list who could slide right into Eifert’s role seamlessly.

Graham will likely jump ship from a sinking Seahawks team that is tearing at the seems, but it is doubtful the Bengals will be able to compete with teams for what will likely be a huge target for most teams.

Trey Burton (Eagles)

This is a Bengals free agent. Burton was an undrafted free agent for the Eagles, but he quickly became the backup to Zach Ertz. He had a fairly good season behind Ertz, but his best game came when Ertz was out. Burton scored two touchdowns and had 74 receiving yards in that game.

It is possible because of how young Burton is that some teams could be willing to take a chance on him. He caught five touchdowns last season. Still, he only caught 23 passes, and he remains to be a huge unknown.

The Eagles also think very highly of him as they gave him a second-round tender when he was a restricted free agent last season. They won’t give him the deal he is looking for though, and if no one does then a Bengals team in need of a tight end could be the perfect short term solution for Burton.

Burton would be able to showcase his talents and hit free agency again after proving his ability.