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Bengals News (5/6): Patience paying off

The Bengals patient approach in the draft paid dividends.

NFL Combine - Day 2

De-briefing the Bengals draft with Duke Tobin and Mike Potts
Looking to be de-briefed on the Bengals' 2020 NFL Draft, roundly praised by pundits and purists as one of the league's best, we sat down with Duke Tobin, director of player personnel, and Mike Potts, director of college scouting. In separate interviews they reviewed how the Bengals grappled with the league's first remote draft and how they put together their first virtual class of college free agents.

Mel Kiper tabs Bengals’ Markus Bailey as one of draft’s underrated
After noting the Bengals essentially had three first-round picks (Jonah Williams’ return, Joe Burrow and Tee Higgins), Kiper isolated one player — seventh-round linebacker Markus Bailey — as one of the draft’s most underrated picks.

NFL rumors: Bengals shopped Andy Dalton to Patriots, Jaguars before release
Dalton ended up signing with the Dallas Cowboys, who now have a competent veteran behind starter Dak Prescott. His one-year contract with the Cowboys is worth $7 million, including $3 million guaranteed, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Cincinnati Bengals: Why the Zac Taylor era truly begins this year
It was shortly after the Super Bowl in 2019 that L.A. Rams QB coach Zac Taylor was named as the new head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals. Taylor led the Bengals to a 2-14 record in his first season and, unfortunately, that record cannot be sponged away. Although that is a reality that will go down in the record books from now on, that should not be held against Taylor or his legacy.

Cincinnati Bengals games most likely to be in prime time next season
Thursday, the NFL will announce the official 2020 schedule. When they do, these games figure to be the likeliest to earn a prime time slot. While the Bengals have one of the easier schedules and some dud matchups (vs. Jaguars, anyone?), there is still some big prime time potential.

Around the league

Jaguars GM expects Fournette to be with team in 2020
"To be honest with you, there were just some minor discussions with that but nothing substantial throughout the draft or prior to the draft," Caldwell said during his appearance on the PFT PM podcast. "I think the mindset is that we're going to go forward with Leonard on the team. I had a good talk with him on Friday. I know Coach Marrone has had some discussion with him. He seems to be in great shape and mental frame of mind, and we feel that he'll have a great season this year."

Clowney ready for next step, open to Seahawks return
Clowney has wanted this free agency, ensuring such freedom when he was traded from Houston to Seattle last season by requiring the deal to remove the Seahawks' ability to franchise tag him. It hasn't produced a lucrative contract with a new team, which can be partially blamed on the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its restrictions on in-person interaction. For a player with an injury history like Clowney's, the medical evaluation is a crucial part of getting a deal done -- especially an expensive one.

Dolphins rookie QB Tua Tagovailoa to wear No. 1
The Dolphins retired that number in 2003 in honor of Hall of Famer Dan Marino. Tagovailoa said shortly after being drafted he wasn't worried about what number he'd wear. He'll don a number that hasn't been worn by a Dolphins QB before, according to Miami Herald columnist Armando Salguero.

J.J. Watt: Hopkins trade 'certainly catches your eye'
"It's above my pay grade and it's something that obviously the team and the organization feels is in the best interest of the team. So as a player on the team, I do my job and I go to work and I play the games, and the GM and the owners, they do their job and they try and do what they feel is best for the team. And so, all I can do is show up and go to work and hope that all the guys that we have are great contributors to our team."