The Cincinnati Bengals have released Mike Pollak, the team announced on Friday. Pollak, who completed his seventh season in the NFL, played the last two years in Cincinnati. He played 22 regular season games and started 11. Prior to the 2014 season, Pollak signed a three-year deal worth $4.8 million, including a $500,000 signing bonus and $1 million guaranteed. The move saves roughly $1.1 million against the 2015 salary cap. Pollak played 14 games in 2014, starting four games for the injured Kevin Zeitler and another two for Clint Boling, who replaced Andre Smith at right tackle.
By why did this happen?
According to Pro Football Focus, Pollak was rated as the team's fifth-best offensive player in 2014 and the fourth-best offensive lineman. PFF graded Pollak with a positive score as a run blocker, as well as a pass protector -- he didn't allow a quarterback sack or a hit on the quarterback.
Still wondering, why...
Paul Dehner Jr. speculates that it's because of his knee -- Pollak appeared on the team's injury report with a knee for most of the season. Yet he practiced most days (save for a few days off on Wednesday) and didn't even appear on the team's injury report in Week 17 or the wild card game against Indianapolis. And again... he played 14 games.
Geoff Hobson says that it wasn't unexpected and that the team is expected to get "depth in free agency and the draft." What? No one actually predicted that the Bengals were going to release him, so there's that. And if you're going to build guard depth, then why dispose of one of your better backup players?
Quality guesses... maybe it's something else.