Bengals News

Bengals 2015 Free Agency: Diamonds in the Rough

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The Bengals would be prudent to consider these free agents in 2015.

When March’s free agency period begins, fans will be hoping the team dives in and signs a significant free agent.  Although the team has indicated it’ll take a more aggressive approach to free agency, in all likelihood, the Bengals will sign players who offer depth and some promise.

This year’s free agent class seems to be especially deep at the positions the Bengals are in need of: defensive end/tackle, tight end, and linebacker.  The free agent depth at these positions should help the Bengals find the necessary talent while not spending a ton of money, music to the Bengals’ ears.  It should bolster this team and account for it’s potential losses this off-season.

With so much focus spent on the prominent free agents who’ll demand substantial financial commitments, these lesser-known free agents can easily be overlooked.  So often, teams believe the big free agent signing will change a team’s fortunes, but this outcome isn’t as prevalent as one may hope.

In the spirit of that reality, let’s take a look at some of these unheralded free agents who’d fit well with the Bengals in 2015.

DT Da’Quan Bowers

A once coveted prospect, Da’Quan Bowers has struggled to live up to expectations in the NFL.

At Clemson, Bowers improved across his three years, which culminated in a season that saw him produce 67 tackles (26 TFLs), 15.5 sacks, and a single forced fumble.  Bowers dealt with an injury during his draft process, which dropped him from a surefire first-round selection (a contender for the first overall selection) into the second round.

Regardless of where he was drafted, Bowers offered great promise.  Across his four years with the Buccaneers, Bowers has failed to develop.  It’s hardly surprising though as Tampa Bay hasn’t exactly been a pillar of consistency nor success in recent years; three coaches in four years will do that to a team and hinder a young player.

Bowers’ blend of size, athleticism, and versatility should appeal to the Bengals.  He can line up just about anywhere along the line.  As someone who is capable of stopping the run, he’d certainly help in this way playing in the AFC North.  He has the talent to apply pressure up the middle, so he’d be a solid reserve player behind Geno Atkins, and could provide some depth at defensive end.

At only 25 years old this month, Bowers still has time to develop into a quality player and maybe even reach some of his promise.  The Bengals enjoy a good resurrection story, and have had success with this in the past.  Could Da’Quan Bowers be their next great story?  The Bengals would do help to consider him.

Next: How About A Young Middle Linebacker?