If the Cincinnati Bengals pull the trigger on the signing of Mike Daniels, it would vault their defensive line into the upper-echelon of the league.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Cincinnati Bengals are hosting defensive tackle Mike Daniels today and if everything goes as planned, he’s expected to wear the orange and black. By pursuing the top defensive tackle left on the open market, the front office is proving that they intend to keep their aggressive style of operating in the years to come.
Daniels is a mammoth player along the interior (6’0, 310 lbs.) that is known primarily for his ability to stop the run. That’s exactly what the Bengals need after losing Josh Tupou and Ryan Glasgow on the depth chart.
How well can Daniels stop the run? Well, according to Pro Football Focus, he has earned a run defense grade of 75 or above in the majority of his eight years in the league. That should go a long way for a Cincinnati defense that ranked among the worst in the league at preventing the ground game a season ago.
Adding to the intrigue of Daniels donning stripes is the experience he brings. Over the course of his career, he’s participated in 111 games and started 74 of those contests. That kind of resume would certainly be welcomed by a defense that is expected to rely on a number of young players such as Logan Wilson and Germaine Pratt.
Mike Daniels makes the Bengals’ defensive line downright scary
The Bengals’ defensive line was already projected to rank as one of the best units among the team before the rumors of Mike Daniels began swirling. Plucking D.J. Reader off the free-agent market to pair with future Hall-of-Famer Geno Atkins was a genius move by Duke Tobin and Co. and it’s a transaction that has been praised by many.
Add in the fact that defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo has Carlos Dunlap, Sam Hubbard, and Carl Lawson coming off the edge as well, and it’s difficult to imagine an opposing offensive line capable of keeping up with so much talent.
If Daniels comes in, fans can rest assured that the defensive line that calls Paul Brown Stadium home will be among the most feared in the NFL.
There will be no rest for any interior lineman the Bengals face in the upcoming season. Atkins and Reader both command double teams. With Daniels rotating in for those two, everyone in the trio will remain fresh and perform at their peak all season long.
Daniels addition would also bode well for a linebacker corps. that is attempting to get their footing. With the big guys occupying the trenches, the young, athletic linebackers will be free to roam, make plays, and generate turnovers.
The signing still has to come through and the defensive coaching staff has to get the new guys up to speed, but things are shaping up for the Queen City to see the return of a dominant Bengals defense.