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Cincinnati Bengals: Ryan Kerrigan would have bolstered pass rush

MIAMI, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 13: Ryan Kerrigan #91 of the Washington Redskins in action during the game against the Miami Dolphins in the first quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on October 13, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 13: Ryan Kerrigan #91 of the Washington Redskins in action during the game against the Miami Dolphins in the first quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on October 13, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /
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The Cincinnati Bengals were interested in signing Ryan Kerrigan per Adam Schefter. Kerrigan went on to sign with the Eagles but it would have been nice to have him in the Bengals defense.

Schefter tweeted the news of Kerrigan’s decision to sign with Philadelphia this morning and quickly tacked on an additional tweet about the teams who were also interested. The Bengals were included in that group, as were the division-rival Steelers.

Kerrigan, a first-round pick out of Purdue in 2011, spent the first 10 years of his career with the Washington Football Team. He recently announced he would not be returning to Washington after a decade with the organization and that opened the door for him to land elsewhere, which he did just hours later.

The Cincinnati Bengals could have used Ryan Kerrigan for their young defense.

Defense was a weakness for the Bengals last year and while they’ve added some names to help out in free agency (Trey Hendrickson and Mike Hilton, to name a few), it’s still not a unit that’s going to strike fear in anyone. Kerrigan had 95.5 sacks in 10 years with Washington and had 5.5 sacks last year, which is tied with Carl Lawson’s 5.5 sacks a year ago. Lawson is no longer on the team.

The next highest sack leader last year was Sam Hubbard and Jordan Evans, both of whom had two sacks apiece. The Bengals need more of a pass rush and Kerrigan could have done that for them but he’ll be taking his talents to Philadelphia.

It’s good to hear that Cincinnati was interested in Kerrigan though because it shows they’re still wanting to bring players in on defense. This team could be more competitive in 2021 but there are definitely glaring holes on their roster and their pass rush has to be a lot better than it was a season ago.

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Kerrigan would have given Cincinnati a feared pass rusher and that can be the difference between a win and a loss sometimes. It’s unfortunate that the Bengals missed out on Kerrigan but hopefully, they can find another disrupting pass rusher to add to their defense prior to the 2021 season.

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