Allan George is back and ready to make an impact with the Bengals
The Cincinnati Bengals released Allan George on Monday after he made the initial 53-man roster. However, he is back with the team on the practice squad. But the abrupt news was understandably difficult for the young defensive back to digest at first.
George’s disappointment was understandable. He performed well and turned heads with his play in the preseason. The undrafted rookie free agent out of Vanderbilt made the initial roster with physical play and good pass coverage. The young defender recorded 12 tackles, and three passes defended in the preseason.
News of his release was a bit shocking on two fronts. First, George’s termination was risky. If another team claimed him, his departure would leave Cincinnati with just three outside corners on the roster.
Even being on the practice squad could expose him to another team poaching him. That is unless the Bengals plan on making him one of the four weekly protected practice squad players for the entire year.
The second surprising aspect of his release is that he was getting first-team reps just last week.
We still might get to see George play on Sundays. Teams can elevate practice squad players to the game-day roster three times during the year without being subject to waivers before reverting to the practice squad. After that, clubs must promote the player to the 53-man roster if they want him to be available for games.
The Bengals could do that with George. Eli Apple is coming off of a quad injury. Second-rounder Cam Taylor-Britt is not available to come off the IR until Week 5. The only other outside corners are Chidobe Awuzie and Tre Flowers. Jalen Davis can also play on the outside even though he spent most of the preseason in the slot and is listed as Mike Hilton’s backup on the official depth chart.
Even though George was caught off guard, it is good to see his time in Cincinnati is not over. His being on the practice squad could be just the beginning. He should see some regular season action, and it might be as early as Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Welcome back, Mr. George.