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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Bengals late night re-signing of safety Taylor Mays stirs fans


By on 3/12/2014 02:30:00 PM

The Cincinnati Bengals were extremely quiet during the first phase of the NFL free agency, almost silent.  After losing defensive end Michael Johnson to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, they have been working behind the scenes to retain their veterans and have had success.  Late last night Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com tweeted that the Bengals re-signed safety Taylor Mays.

The NFL free agency period is used for a myriad of reasons, including re-working contracts to keep players on teams.  In addition to return specialist Brandon Tate and offensive lineman Mike Pollak, the Bengals got to keep another one of their own in re-signing Mays.

Mays, a highly touted high school defender that starred in college for the USC Trojans, was selected in the second round of the of the 2010 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. Things didn't work out on the west coast, and he was traded to the Bengals in 2011 for a seventh round pick in the 2013 draft.

Landing in Cincinnati worked out better for Mays, where he became a solid go-to player that could play multiple positions, including linebacker.

In an October 27th 49-9 victory over the New York Jets last season, Mays suffered a dislocated shoulder and was placed on the injured reserve list. He never returned and ended the 2013 season with 19 tackles in just eight games. 

Bobak Ha'Eri via Wikimedia Commons (Mays at USC)
As the news broke last night of Mays being re-signed, the Bengals fan base had mixed reactions.  Some were happy for just seeing activity in Cincinnati, but others blasted the franchise for re-signing a safety from the injured reserve with a combined 89 tackles and one forced fumble in four years. 

Details of the contract have not been released at the time of this writing.

Regardless of the feelings of the fans, the Bengals are at least focusing on retaining their own. Last year they were the AFC North Champs with an 11-5 record, and earned a trip to the playoffs for the third straight year.

It seems that the Bengals front office knows what they are doing and have a method behind their madness.  After all, three straight years of playoff appearances is an enormous improvement from their 2010 season, where the Bengals ended dead last in their division with a 4-12 record.  It must be noted somewhere that Taylor Mays joined the Bengals in 2011 and has been on their roster for the last three successful seasons.




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