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Could the Cincinnati Bengals get free agency started early with cornerback A.J. Bouye?
The Denver Broncos just cut Bouye loose, doing him something of a solid by cuttig him now and letting him be the only starter-level corner on the market before free agency opens in March.
Bouye’s case is an interesting one, though. Denver cut him to save roughly $13 million in cap space after he played in just seven games last year while dealing with injuries, all before getting hit with a six-game suspension. He’ll serve the last two games of his ban at the start of next season.
Meaning, Bouye might have to settle for something of a prove-it deal much cheaper than he normally would, especially if he wants to get ahead of the curve and find a spot before the market opens.
Bouye will turn 30 in August and has had a down few seasons. But in 2018, he was still playing at a high level and posted a 75.7 Pro Football Focus grade, so there’s still the allure of upside.
Cincinnati figures to have a need at corner no matter what happens with William Jackson, considering Trae Waynes has yet to even suit up and the depth is questionable at best. If Bouye has a soft market and has to settle for a cheap deal, it couldn’t hurt to make an early move — and it would eliminate the possibility the team takes yet another first-round corner.