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Nov 10, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice (27) gets tackled by Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Vincent Rey (57) at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN’s Coley Harvey broke down the Bengals’ linebacking unit, and it’s amazing how little money is being spent on that position:

(2014 salary-cap numbers): Rey Maualuga ($3.9 million), Harrison ($2 million),Sean Porter ($602,325), Burfict ($570,334), Lamur ($570,000), Jayson DiManche ($500,000),Brandon Joiner ($495,000), J.K. Schaffer ($495,000).

It’s amazing at how much of a discount the Bengals are getting Burfict. Since he went undrafted in 2012, he had to make the league annual minimum, per the recent collective bargaining agreement. With his contract expiring at the end of next season, Burfict is sure to see a significant pay raise sometime in the relatively near future. After his latest season, Rey made a good case for being brought back.

The Bengals will consider giving Burfict an extension this offseason, but that will prove difficult to do if they sign A.J. Green to a long-term deal that makes him one of the highest-paid receivers in the game.

As for Vincent Rey, he’s a restricted free agent who will undoubtedly be tendered. The question is does another team swoop in and offer him a contract the Bengals can’t afford to match?

Other than that, the Bengals are set at that position for next year, but could look to add another player, especially if James Harrison retires.

He has yet to state publicly if he’s playing next year, which would be his 11th season at age 36.


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