In Bengals news, Hayden Hurst won't be back in 2023, as he inked a three-year deal with the Panthers. Also, the team struck a massive deal with Orlando Brown Jr., meaning they have their left tackle of the future. Oh, and Trayveon Williams also re-signed with the team.
Losing Hurst is unfortunate but at the same time, the team was never going to give the guy a three-year deal when they could simply find a cheaper option in the draft. Signing a different tight end in free agency isn't out of the question either.
Brown's signing came at a time when Bengals fans were pretty down in the dumps as they waited for their team to make a move. He signed a four-year deal worth $64 million and his contract is front-loaded, to say the least.
As for Williams, the re-signing came a day after the Bengals lost Samaje Perine to the Broncos. Williams has been a member of the Bengals since 2019 when they selected him in the sixth round out of Texas A&M. He hasn't started any games but has looked serviceable as a depth piece when given a chance.
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Hayden Hurst will bring pass catching and much-needed juice to Panthers’ TE room [Joseph Person, The Athletic]
I chuckled at Person's use of the term "Cincinnati South" in his article when describing the moves the Panthers have made. They now have Hurst, Vonn Bell, and former Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton on their roster for the 2023 season.
Person also discusses how Hurst fits into the Panthers' plans. This might be painful for Bengals fans to read but it's interesting to see how he fits in with his new team when it felt like he was the perfect fit for Cincinnati for at least a few more years.
Bengals without a starting tight end as Hayden Hurst departs to Carolina [Kelsey Conway, Cincinnati Enquirer]
Conway discusses how Hurst is yet another big Bengals free-agent to sign elsewhere. Getting a three-year offer was probably hard for Hurst to turn down and it's no wonder he chose to play in Carolina despite the team rebuilding rather than come back to the Queen City and play with Joe Burrow and the crew.
With Samaje Perine gone but Trayveon Williams back in the stripes, what will the Bengals depth chart look like in 2023? I take my best guess in my recent depth chart prediction piece.