Originally written on Three-Way Chili  |  Last updated 11/18/14
Remember all those improvements the Cincinnati Bengals made during the offseason, addressing glaring needs? Of course you don’t; it never happened. It was obvious to everyone who follows the team that the Bengals needed a serious upgrade at safety. Reggie Nelson was fine at one of the spots (although he hasn’t played well for the most part this season) but there was no way the Bengals could go into the season with Taylor Mays as the other starting safety. But that’s exactly what they did. When Jim Harbaugh arrived as the San Francisco 49ers head coach in 2011, one of his first orders of business was shipping Mays out for pennies on the dollar. A 2010 second-round pick, the 49ers traded Mays to the Bengals for a seventh rounder. Think about that for a second. Harbaugh knew that Mays would never be a good player in the NFL and was willing to take a seventh round pick for a guy who was a second-rounder the previous year. Also, it was obvious the Bengals needed to add depth at linebacker. They did nothing to address the situation via free agency or in the draft and were lucky to get Vontaze Burfict as an undrafted free agent. But people might ask “Did the Bengals have enough money to go out and address needs at safety and linebacker?” The answer might surprise you. Actually, it shouldn’t if you know anything about Mike Brown. The Bengals are a robust $20 million under the salary cap this year. There should be a penalty for such cheapness, but that’s business as usual for Brown. When your marquee free agent signing is BenJarvus Green-Ellis-McNeverbreaksatackle you know the owner of your team just doesn’t care enough about winning. Of course Brown wants to win, but he doesn’t want it badly enough. He also doesn’t know how to win. Or else, he would hire a general manager who knows how to build a championship-contending team. The bottom line? The Bengals are 3-5 this season and we’re already in “Looking Ahead To The Draft” mode. But don’t expect much action in free agency from the Bengals in 2013. That’s about as safe a bet as one could possibly make. And it’s a shame because the framework of a good, young team is in place. There is an absolute star at wide receiver in A.J. Green. There is at least a serviceable quarterback who will only get better in future seasons in Andy Dalton. I know Dalton has struggled at times this year, but be patient with him. He’s a winner and he’ll be successful if given time in Cincinnati. The defense has young stalwarts like defensive tackle Geno Atkins, defensive ends Michael Johnson and Carlos Dunlap, and Burfict. Also, cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick was the first of the Bengals’ two first-round picks this past spring and is said to have a very high ceiling. The other first-rounder, offensive guard Kevin Zeitler, has started all eight games and appears to have been an excellent pick at a position of need. However, even with that strong nucleus, having an owner that believes it’s OK to be $20 million under the cap gives Bengals fans little hope for the future.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

NCAA 'concerned' over Indiana's 'religious freedom' bill

Report: James frustrated with Love’s inability to fit in

Shane Victorino rips radio hosts for twisting Hamels trade talk

Jerry Jones on Greg Hardy: He's paid a 'terrific price'

Senators to fans: Stop throwing hamburgers on the ice

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Revis: Patriots' offer 'wasn't in the ballpark' of what he wanted

Confirmed: Lionel Messi is not as tall as Gheorghe Muresan

Jags: Blake Bortles is 'everything we hoped for'

WVU freshman Daxter Miles: We’re going to beat Kentucky

Rick Pitino: John Calipari is the coach of the year

Pablo Sandoval was irritated with Giants about his weight

Is Chuck Pagano receiving the Jim Harbaugh treatment?

Wideouts wearing out their welcome

Dean Smith willed $200 to each of his former players

10 best coaches who have never been to the Final Four

Five under-the-radar American League MVP candidates

Michigan sent recruit Naseir Upshur’s girlfriend a letter

Five MLB teams that could disappoint in 2015

Ranking the NFL’s biggest ongoing controversies

Randy Gregory tested positive for marijuana at NFL combine

Andrew McCutchen cuts off his dreadlocks

WATCH: Soccer team celebrates too hard, allows goal

WATCH: Wisconsin player embarrassed in front of media

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Five under-the-radar AL MVP candidates

Michigan sent recruit's GF a letter

MLB teams that could disappoint

25 years ago, the best Sweet 16 of all time was pure madness

The 2015 bad quarterback carousel

17 facts to know before the Sweet 16

Agent: Sam was horrible at veteran combine

Keeping judo ‘pure’ in Europe means keeping MMA out

The Sweet 16 should be seen as success

On the Browns, Hard Knocks, questions and narratives

Sweet 16 West Region preview

Sweet 16 Midwest Region preview

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.