Bengals News

Positives of Passing on Jame Harrison, Pursuing Karlos Dansby

1 of 2

Oct 14 2012; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins middle linebacker Karlos Dansby (58) before a game against the St. Louis Rams at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

With news of the Bengals and free agent outside linebacker James Harrison breaking off contract talks, it now appears as though middle linebacker Karlos Dansby could still be an option.

While it’s safe to say there won’t be any agreements reached between now and next Thursday’s NFL Draft, with the Bengals still needing to add a linebacker, there are a lot of positives to come out of the Bengals not getting Harrison.

First off, Harrison will be turning 35 on May 4th, and his production is only going to continue to decrease. At best, he would have been a stop-gap in 2013 while a young rookie waited and developed. Now, instead of throwing an aging Harrison out onto the field and hoping he can stay healthy enough to play in double digit games, the Bengals can look at finding a long-term solution at OLB.

Secondly, Dansby has played all three linebacker spots in a 4-3, a and is just 31 years old. IF the Bengals sign another linebacker, it needs to be Dansby. He’s been more durable over the past few seasons, and can fit better into Mike Zimmer’s defense. Harrison has played in a 3-4 scheme his whole career, so there’s no certainty he would have made a positive impact in a 4-3 defense.