Teams waiting on top safeties in free agency


The Cincinnati Bengals are not the only team holding out on safeties in free agency. Could they make a move if the numbers drop?

Like every other year, the free agency period started off with top names flying off the shelf so fast that almost no one could keep track. With the madness of the first week over, there are still top names left in free agency and much of that is due to the price these players are commanding. The Cincinnati Bengals have made a splash per say in free agency so far but have not signed a safety.

While safeties Tyrann Mathieu and Morgan Burnett have no found new homes, there are still some big names that remain in free agency. Guys like Eric Reid, Tre Boston, Kenny Vaccaro, and Tyvon Branch. So why are all of these talents still sitting in free agency? According to Ian Rapoport who appeared on NFL Network, the safeties are commanding too high of a number and teams have moved on to take care of other positions.

"“None of the top safeties have really moved and it’s interesting because the league is using safeties more than ever I can remember. Sometimes what happens is a bunch of guys at the same position all set a price that’s pretty high, teams decide that’s too high and they say, “You know what? I’m just going to move on to other positions.” That’s what happened in free agency. We saw positions come off the board so fast—receiver was one, running backs came off the board quickly, obviously quarterbacks came off quickly, on and on. Nobody moved on the safeties. So it’s a week later and perhaps these guys prices are still too high or maybe the teams said, “You know what? We’re not in a hurry anymore because the first wave of free agency is over.”"

The Bengals could be one of those teams holding out waiting for one of these safeties to lower their numbers as they are in need of a playmaker. Cincinnati has two safeties in George Iloka and Shawn Williams but neither has been that playmaker that the Bengals defense needs the last couple of seasons. Cincinnati’s defense only forced 14 turnovers in 2017 and the two safeties only hauled in two of those turnovers.

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Versatility is a need at the safety position for the Bengals and there are plenty of options still left in free agency. There is still time to make cuts around the roster to free up space to sign one of these safeties before the draft. The Bengals should use this time to make those cuts and sign one of these free agent safeties so that it’s one less need going into the draft.