With the additions of multiple interior offensive lineman at the start of free agency for the Cincinnati Bengals, the writing was on the wall for Trey Hopkins, and that has now been made official with his release.
During a Friday news conference, head coach Zac Taylor announced that Hopkins was being cut. Taylor also confirmed that the newly-signed Ted Karras is the team’s starting center.
Hopkins was brought in to Cincinnati as an undrafted free agent following the 2014 NFL Draft. He did not instantly become a contributor as he would not see the field in a regular season game until 2016.
Zac introducing Cappa and Karras after announcing release of Trey Hopkins: Zac says Karras will be the center— Geoff Hobson (@GeoffHobsonCin) March 18, 2022
From then on, Hopkins played in double-digit games for Cincinnati every year. A major success story for the Cincinnati office getting a solid player from an undrafted free agent, also for the development staff considering he spent two years on the practice squad.
The Bengals save nearly $6 million in cap space with his release. With the moves already made on the offensive line, especially now that Karras is the starter after the Bengals poached him away from the New England Patriots, letting Hopkins go was already effectively a done deal.
Hopkins will be 30 years old, but don’t be surprised if he is able to sign with another team and contribute as he will be another year out from the ACL tear he suffered at the end of the 2020 season that seemed to hamper his play early in 2021.
Hopkins will always have a special place in Cincinnati’s heart as the underdog who became a major contributor to the Bengals team that made it to the Super Bowl. It’s sad to see him go, but now a new line has been made to protect Joe Burrow on the journey to another Super Bowl.
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