The Bengals were on the market for a cornerback this year after a lot of uncertainty at the position.
Cincinnati chose to tackle this by selecting William Jackson III out of Houston in the first round of the draft. As the saying goes, you can never have to many good corners, especially in this league.
So, after resigning Adam Jones, getting back a healthy Darqueze Dennard and drafting William Jackson III to go along with Dre Kirkpatrick, Josh Shaw and Chris Lewis-Harris, are the Bengals still in the market to boost their cornerback depth?
The answer is of course they are. Jackson III is a rookie so who knows if he’ll even play. He might just sing the sad song of being redshirted as most Bengal rookies are. Marvin Lewis loves to redshirt rookies, even as frustrating as it may be for fans. Then Josh Shaw has limited experience and Chris Lewis-Harris is a solid depth piece, but doesn’t play much unless there’s and injury.
At the top, Pacman (or now known as “the mentor”), Dre Kirkpatrick and Darqueze Dennard are slotted as the starters, but Dennard is coming off a pretty big injury. Dennard is going to man the slot position, but in order to provide some insurance, the Bengals should sign Brandon Boykin.
Once upon a time in what seems like a land far far away, Boykin was once one of the best slot corners in the league. Doesn’t it seem like a long time ago? It really wasn’t. During Boykin’s Philadelphia tenure, which was only two years ago, Boykin dominated the slot.
However, after the Chip Kelly ego started to take control, Boykin was one of the many players hit by the monster. He originally signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers and at first it seemed like a great signing. Words can’t explain how bad the Steelers secondary is, therefore, to add a player of Boykin’s stature was good thing.
Unfortunately, Boykin never caught on in Pittsburgh and left after a year to sign with Carolina. Boykin was on the Panthers for all of two months before being released. it’s very surprising that they released him especially after losing Josh Norman and possessing little to no experience in the secondary.
"With Boykin’s release, the Panthers depth chart sits with Benwikere (coming off a broken leg), Robert McClain (got torched last season) rookies James Bradberry (second round), Daryl Worley (third round) and Zack Sanchez (fifth round), Shaquille Richardson (zero NFL snaps), Lou Young (zero NFL snaps) and Teddy Williams (zero NFL starts in five seasons; one pass defensed).per Kevin Patra on NFL.com"
Now that Boykin is trying to find his fourth team in two years, what better place for him to go to than Cincinnati. How great would it be if Boykin could succeed in Cincinnati, but not in Pittsburgh? More fuel to the fire of the Bengals-Steelers rivalry.
Boykin still has the ability to be a very good corner in the league. There’s no way you can go from good corner in Philadelphia to not being on a roster two years later. If Boykin signed with Cincinnati, he would be able to come back to relevance. All he needs is a home and an opportunity and he can have both in Cincinnati.
The Bengals could definitely use Boykin, but only if he goes back to being Boykin of Philadelphia. Cincinnati should really consider signing him. It wouldn’t cost much as he only signed a one year, $840,000 deal. It could end up being a steal, a low risk, high reward project and a chance to revitalize another corners career.
Just look at Adam Jones as the prime example and look where is career went in Cincinnati.