Cincinnati Bengals 2020 Legal Tampering Period Recap

The Bengals had a productive legal tampering period to start off the 2020 free agency period. Here’s a breakdown of the front office’s moves.

The legal tampering period is a two-day window in which teams can begin to negotiate with free agents. The period started Monday at 12 pm ET and lasts until Wednesday at 4 pm ET. Up until 4:35 p.m on Tuesday, the Cincinnati Bengals were one of three teams in the league to not make a move. However, the front office then went on to sign former Texans interior defensive lineman D.J. Reader and former Vikings cornerback Trae Waynes.

Signings:

D.J. Reader, DT

The Bengals made a splash late in the legal tampering period, agreeing to terms with the 25-year-old defensive tackle that made him the highest-paid nose tackle in the NFL. Cincinnati locked up the 6’3, 346-pound DT with a four year, $53 million dollar deal. Reader tallied 52 total tackles with 2.5 sacks last year and is highly regarded as one of the best run-stopping interior defensive linemen in the NFL.

Trae Waynes, CB

The Bengals upgraded their secondary on Tuesday afternoon, locking up the 27-year-old cornerback on a three-year deal worth $42 million. The former 2015 11th overall pick played 74 games for the Vikings in his 5-year career, racking up 247 tackles and 7 picks. Waynes is an experienced player, starting all 44 games he appeared in the last three seasons in Minnesota. With uncertainty at the cornerback position, this was a good move for Cincinnati.

Departures:

Darqueze Dennard, CB

The 6 year Bengals veteran was picked up by Jacksonville on a three year, $13.5 million deal. Dennard was a very productive slot cornerback in his time with Cincinnati, racking up 274 tackles, 3 picks, and 22 passes defended while also being highly ranked out of all slot cornerbacks in the NFL.

Clayton Fejedelem, S

The former Bengals safety and special teams ace agreed with Miami on a 3-year deal. The former 7th round pick played 1,441 snaps on special teams in the past four years in Cincinnati. The 26-year-old racked up 177 tackles, a forced fumble, and a pick his time with the Bengals.

B.W. Webb, CB

The front office decided that they would be terminating Webb’s contract, which takes $2.6 million off the books for 2020. This move hints that things are changing in Cincinnati. By cutting Webb one year into his three-year deal, they are showing they aren’t satisfied with mediocrity.

John Miller, G

Along with B.W. Webb, it was announced Wednesday that they would be parting ways with starting guard John Miller. The 26-year-old started 13 games last season for the Bengals after signing a three-year, $16.5 million contract last March.

Next: How Reader, Waynes Help Bengals in Battle for AFC North
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