10 best free agents in 2023 and are they a fit for the Bengals?

Buffalo Bills v Cincinnati Bengals
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9. Daron Payne, DL

The Bengals really need to boost their pass-rushing presence and Daron Payne could easily help with that. The Washington Commanders benefitted from Payne's prolific 2022 season, as he had 11.5 sacks and 20 QB hits. He also had 64 tackles and PFF also noted that he has 86 defensive stops against the run, which would also be huge for this defense.

Unfortunately, if the Bengals want Payne, they're going to have to pay up. He's projected to earn a four-year contract worth $80 million with an annual salary of $20 million and $55 million guaranteed. Considering that the Bengals have already paid their defensive line as much money as they have, I can't imagine that they make a realistic run at Payne.

Would Daron Payne be a fit? Yes, but I don't see them paying him this much money.

8. Orlando Brown Jr., OT

The best available left tackle in free agency is a guy that the Bengals are all too familiar with. They faced Orlando Brown twice a year when he was in Baltimore for the first three years of his career and have grown accustomed to facing him now that he's been a member of the Chiefs.

Brown is hitting free agency now though and even though his 2022 season was hit and miss, he's the best left tackle available and is a slight upgrade from Jonah Williams. The Bengals need to decide if they want to stick with Williams, go with Jackson Carman, or bring someone else in for the left tackle gig.

I'm not super sold on Brown being a franchise left tackle but he did play well in the second half of the season. I guess we can see how he holds up against the Eagles pass rush in the Super Bowl. He's projected to earn a five-year deal worth $105 million ($21 million per year and $70 million guaranteed), which is too rich for the Bengals' blood.

Would Orlando Brown be a fit? They need a left tackle, so yes, but he's going to be way too expensive for them.