Cincinnati Bengals: Reggie Nelson to the AFC West

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Former Bengals’ safety Reggie Nelson has agreed to a contract with the Oakland Raiders, according to NFL Insiders Ian Rapoport and Adam Schefter. The deal is reported to be for two years, with no monetary details having been released yet.

Nelson played the last six seasons for the Bengals, after playing his first three in Jacksonville. He is coming off a season where he was 32 years old, and recorded a career high in interceptions with 8. The Bengals had to choose between bringing back either Nelson or safety counterpart George Iloka. Iloka was the man the Bengals decided to move forward with, considering he is entering his prime and is prototype safety. 

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This is a great move by the Raiders, who are one of the up and coming teams in not only the AFC, but the whole NFL. After drafting Khalil Mack and Derek Carr in 2014, the Raiders selected Amari Cooper in 2015 to complete the three-headed monster that will be carrying this franchise for years to come. In Nelson, they get a playmaker in the defensive backfield, and a guy who can bring veteran leadership to the young superstars on the team. 

This is the fourth big name free agent the Raiders brought in; they signed guard Kelechi Osemele to help solidify the run game and protect Carr on the offensive side, and three veterans on defense. Nelson will join LB Bruce Irvin and CB Sean Smith in helping out the black and silver become a defensive monster. If the Raiders can address the defensive tackle or cornerback positions in this year’s draft, they will be looking at having one of the best defenses in the league next year. 

With a top-tier defense, a dynamic young duo at the quarterback and wide receiver position, the Raiders will be looking to win the AFC West next season and potentially make a deep playoff run.

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