After much speculation, Dre Kirkpatrick’s future with the Cincinnati Bengals has now been revealed.
Kirkpatrick has been released by the Bengals after spending eight years with the team. After also releasing B.W. Webb earlier this offseason, the Bengals secondary will look far different in 2020.
They will look to supplement the two cornerbacks with a duo of former Minnesota Vikings defensive backs. The team brought in Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander to strengthen their secondary. They also had interest in cornerback Kevin Johnson, who eventually signed with the Browns.
As for Kirkpatrick, he was one of the Bengals’ first-round picks back in 2012. Remember when they also drafted Kevin Zeitler shortly afterwards?
Drafted with the 17th overall selection, the former Alabama cornerback had easily the best seasons of his career from 2015-2017, helping justify his eight-figure salary. Kirkpatrick totaled 302 tackles during his eight-year tenure, 70 of which came during the 2015 season.
Set to take on an $11 million cap hit for keeping Kirkpatrick, the Bengals now are looking at around $2.8 million in dead cap according to Spotrac. That said, this move was expected earlier this offseason.
With Darqueze Dennard *seemingly* set to sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars and both Webb and Kirkpatrick off the team, William Jackson III is one of the only remaining cornerbacks from last year’s team.
He’ll create a formidable trio with Waynes and Alexander. Add in Jessie Bates III and newly signed Vonn Bell, and this secondary should be drastically improved in 2020.
After a highly active and somewhat surprising free agency period, the Bengals still have the NFL Draft where the fireworks will really take place. Joe Burrow the final piece to this puzzle, a puzzle that could end with a playoff appearance in 2020.
That said, are you a fan of the releasing of eight-year veteran Dre Kirkpatrick?
Do you believe releasing Dre Kirkpatrick was a necessary move?
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