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Bengals News (3/8): Plenty of choices

The Bengals have to add some help to their interior offensive line this offseason, and there will be plenty of veterans available to choose from.

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New York Giants v Cincinnati Bengals Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Hobson's Choice: Senior Writer Geoff Hobson answers questions from fans about free agency and the draft
The first big question about free agency is whether it's going to be the Wild West or the mild west? The salary cap is lower for the first time in history. All player minimum salaries will go up due to the new labor deal, so just what will free agency look like? Check back in 10 days.

Bengals could get more time to decide on tag for WJ3, Lawson as deadline looms
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the NFL could end up moving the deadline back since there has been nothing official on a finalized salary cap number ahead of the new league year starting on March 17.

Who Asked You? Getting the Skinny on college hoops, Reds and Bengals
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Local 12 sports anchor Chris Renkel and Local 12 digital sports columnist and editor Richard Skinner discussed the end of the NCAA basketball regular season heading into conference tournament play, what's transpired at Reds spring training in a 1-5 start to Cactus League play and Bengals offseason moves.

Resetting the Bengals' 5 biggest needs entering free agency – The Athletic
This is all true, but more needs exist than just those basics. For those just tuning in, here is a primer ranking the Bengals’ top needs as they enter free agency and the outlook on each spot.

Cincinnati Bengals Mentioned in Wild Trade Idea Involving Fifth Overall Pick in 2021 NFL Draft
Unfortunately, Ertz battled injuries in 2020 and some are wondering if his best days are behind him. He made three-straight Pro Bowls from 2017-19, but only appeared in 11 games in 2020, finishing with just 36 receptions for 335 yards and one touchdown. His yards-per-game (30.5) was his lowest since his rookie year.

Bengals are still confident in Trae Waynes heading into key offseason
In fact, defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo just told Geoff Hobson of that he expected big things from Waynes next year after his simply being around the team last year:

Cincinnati Bengals' Star defensive tackle Geno Atkins One of Many NFL Veterans Being 'Floated' in Trade Talks - Sports Illustrated Cincinnati Bengals News, Analysis and More
"He has relatively reasonable numbers the next two years ($12.2 million, $13.45 million) but turns 33 in March, and a shoulder injury severely hampered his game last fall," Breer wrote in his MMQB column. "He’s another one [player] who will probably be cut if he’s not traded."

Bengals will have opportunities with guards expected to be released
Upgrading the offensive line is a focus for the Bengals during the 2021 offseason. Guards, Kevin Zeitler of the New York Giants and Andrew Norwell of the Jacksonville Jaguars as reported by Jason LaCanfora of CBS and the Los Angeles Chargers Trai Turner according to Adam Shefter of ESPN are expected to be released soon.

Around the league

NFL could move back tag deadline without official salary cap number
We know the salary cap won't be lower than $180 million, but how close it is to that floor will determine each team's flexibility in 2021. If the official figure isn't announced at some point Monday, expect the deadline to get pushed.

2021 NFL free agency: Eleven players who could be overpriced
NFL players are worth any money they can get, especially in this pandemic year with a reduced salary cap. Consider this list, then, a prediction of the players who are most likely to sign a contract in the next month that eventually looks onerous. Today's big free-agent signings often turn into tomorrow's cap cuts when their deals no longer make sense.

Zach Ertz trade talk: Multiple teams interested in acquiring Eagles TE
While this upcoming year's salary cap yet to be fully determined, the Eagles are projected to be well over the maximum number ($34,146,468 in the red, per Over the Cap) and trading Ertz away would give them some much-needed financial relief. Ertz is set to earn a base salary of $8.25 million in 2021 while carrying a cap hit of $12.5 million and a dead cap value of $7.8 million.

Bills owner Kim Pegula says 2020 team 'set the floor' for Buffalo
The Buffalo Bills won their first AFC East title since 1995, cruising to a 13-3 record and winning their first postseason game in 25 years. Sean McDermott's club got ousted in the AFC Championship game, falling 38-24 to the Kansas City Chiefs.