Best Available Free Agents for Bengals

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Defensive Line: The Bengals have mostly young players in the defensive trenches. They put plenty of pressure on opposing quarterbacks but there is always room for added depth to the D-Line rotation as teams like the New York Giants have shown.

DT Abrayo Franklin (NO) – Defensive tackles Domata Peko and Geno Atkins provide the Bengals with a more than admirable DT starting lineup but these big guys tend to get fatigued after 16 games of fighting in the dirt and grime. Franklin is a proven commodity at DT and is the best available player in free agency at his position.

DE Andre Carter (NE) – Carter had great success before a season ending injury last year. He would be a great veteran presence to the young tumblers at DE for the Bengals.

Linebacker: The Bengals may have the best tackling/fastest Linebacker trio in the NFL. Even so, they struggled against the run especially in the playoffs (Arian Foster anyone?). Some depth wouldn’t hurt as these guys take a lot of punishment.

Rocky McIntosh (WAS) – Has tremendous speed and safety-like ball hawking skills, but has not shown the tendency to stay healthy. Fits best in a 4-3 scheme.

Ernie Sims (IND) – Lots of speed, good coverage skills, not the best instincts. Mike Zimmer could get the best out of him and he is at the point in his career that he would likely come off the bench.

Gary Brackett (IND) – Probably will have to take a backup role so that won’t be an issue. Brackett has speed but lacks size, but possesses great play recognition ability as he was the Peyton Manning of the Colts’ defense for  several years.

E.J. Henderson (MIN) – Once a prominent threat at linebacker, injuries have slowed Henderson down as of late. Given the chance he can be a great run-stopping linebacker and provide the Bengals with some adequate depth on their front seven.

Safety: The Bengals might have somewhat of a deficit at this position. Besides FS Reggie Nelson there is an unproven rookie George Illoka and not much else.

O.J. Atogwe (WAS) – Throughout his career Atogwe has been a proven ball hawking safety with a tenacity to create turnovers. Injuries have slowed him lately, but he could improve a weak position for the Bengals.

Melvin Bullitt (IND) – Bullitt has a cool name and did a good job replacing Bob Sanders. He is young and talented when healthy and would make a good stand-in if things didn’t work out at SS.

Sean Jones (TB) – Jones was somewhat of a disappointment for the Bucs, but he is still considered a huge run-stopping safety with above average ball hawking skills.

Chris Hope (TEN) – Hope has had an illustrious career at times on a defense in Tennessee with a cluster of play-makers. He is a cerebral player who, if signed, would make a great addition to the Bengals squad.

Bob Sanders (SD) – He’s Bob Sanders. What if he got healthy for one more year and returned to his defensive player of the year form?

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