The Cincinnati Bengals are bringing Tyler Eifert back.
According to Ian Rapoport, Eifert is getting another one-year deal to return to the Queen City.
Source: TE Tyler Eifert is signing back with the #Bengals on a 1-year deal. They keep one of their own.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 16, 2019
Eifert, who was slated to become a free agent, is still in the midst of a long road to recovery from his broken ankle suffered in September. While there’s nothing good about that kind of injury, Eifert was fortunate that it occurred early in the season, thus giving him more time to recover before he hit unrestricted free agency in March.
Last offseason, the Bengals made the decision to give Eifert a one-year “prove it deal”, laden with incentives, so this will almost certainly be a similar contract. It’s also exactly the kind of contract needed for both parties.
If Eifert has a big year, he will get a big deal in 2020, as well as it probably pointing to good things for the Bengals offense in 2019. But if he gets injured again, it may be game over for his NFL career, as he has only played in 14 games over the last three seasons. He also played in just one game in 2014 after dislocating his elbow in Week 1.
When healthy, Eifert has also been a major factor in the Bengals’ offense from a game-planning perspective. Even when the ball doesn’t come his way, defenses have to account for him, which usually frees up A.J. Green, Tyler Boyd and others. It also makes life much easier on Andy Dalton, who has had his best success when he’s had a capable tight end.