Cincinnati Bengals: Former Safety to Return for 2016?


As Free Agency continues to make fans wonder what are the Bengals next plans, a former Bengal has popped up, and the talks of reuniting are a strong possibility.

According to Geoff Hobson of, there are talks that Taylor Mays has been in discussion to return to the team and take the role of Nickel-Linebacker to fill in for the departure of Emmanuel Lamur. While Mays spent four seasons in Cincinnati, he was a role player between the safety position and also played a bit of the nickel-linebacker for Mike Zimmer and Paul Guenther. 

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Mays, who is set to start the 2016 season on a 4 game suspension has traveled quite a bit since leaving the Bengals at the end of the 2014 season. Yes, the 2014 season. Mays started the 2015 NFL year with the Minnesota Vikings where he was on the team for less than three months, then signed with the Detroit Lions where he was a member of the roster for less than 2 months, then signed with the Oakland Raiders where he was also cut, then shortly after resigned.

In a linebacking core that is set to feature Vontaze Burfict, Rey Maualuga, Vincent Rey and P.J. Dawson, one has to wonder if bringing Taylor Mays back to the roster really is a good idea? The obvious part is he never lived up to his hype coming out of USC. The other being the four game suspension for a team who is already losing Vontaze Burfict for three games.

If Mays does in fact return to the Bengals, what would this mean for the potential future of A.J. Hawk and even the plans for when P.J. Dawson is a contributor to this defense?