There used to be a point, probably during the 2007 offseason, when I might’ve been surprised had the Bengals acquired another player with a criminal record. By that point, 10 Bengals had been arrested in the previous 14 months, and owner Mike Brown pledged to build the team with solid citizens.
That didn’t last long. The team released Chris Henry prior to the 2008 NFL draft only to re-sign him four months later (against head coach Marvin Lewis‘ better judgment, it should be noted). And today, their latest acquisition only seems fitting: Tank Johnson, ex-Cook County Jail resident and former Cowboys castoff is now a member of the Bengals. Of course he is.
As the Dallas Morning News‘ Todd Archer points out, Johnson’s Dallas career can best be summarized as that guy who walked off the field after the Week 17 Eagles’ drubbing yelling, “I’m a free agent, baby!” Archer adds:
The Cowboys did not make an effort to keep Johnson, who had 45 tackles, a sack and a forced fumble last season. In his two years with the Cowboys, Johnson played only OK and never seemed to buy into the responsibilities of the nose tackle in this system. In other words, he freelanced too much.
Unlike years past, the Bengals’ run defense isn’t the problem — they ranked seventh in the league a year ago. And yet, ironically, somebody signing Johnson would be a swell idea.
Somehow, this team managed to win four times last season.