James Rapien

James Rapien

James Rapien came to talk sports and chew gum, and he's all out of gum.Full Bio


Re-signing LaFell makes sense if it doesn't change draft plans

The Bengals re-signed wide receiver Brandon LaFell on Wednesday. LaFell finished the 2016 season with 64 receptions, 862 yards and six touchdowns. I'm fine with the signing as long as it doesn't change their draft plans. 

LaFell is a good player, but he doesn't scare defenses. They need to add a playmaker in the draft. That could mean selecting Corey Davis or John Ross in the first round. They could also add a deep threat in the middle rounds.

The Bengals' offense is just one A.J. Green injury away from being the pedestrian ball of mediocrity it was last season. They didn't score more than 20 points in any of their nine losses in 2016. LaFell had one of the best seasons in his career, but I'm not sure there was one defensive coordinator worried about the Bengals' wide receivers when Green was injured. 

Re-signing LaFell is fine. I don't think Bengals fans should hate it. I don't think it should excite the fan base either. The best phrase to describe the signing is "meh."

The Bengals need their Marvin Jones replacement. Jones was able to stretch the field. LaFell isn't that type of player. Neither is 2016 second round pick Tyler Boyd. Will the Bengals hesitate to draft a wide receiver in the first round because they re-signed LaFell? That's the million dollar question.

If the answer is no, then I have no problem with the Bengals keeping LaFell. Heck, I praised them for signing him last season. If the answer is yes, then I'm not really sure why this move would make sense.

It does sound like the Bengals still want to add a speedy wide receiver in the draft. 

I have the Bengals taking a wide receiver in my three round mock draft. I also wrote about Davis and Ross. Both of them would bring the downfield presence the Bengals are looking for. 

For more on the Bengals go here

Here are six free agents the Bengals should consider signing.

Check out our first Bengals mock draft of the season. 

I think it's time for the Bengals to release Adam Jones. 

Here's an in-depth look at Bengals' free agency. 

Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com believes they will stand by Jeremy Hill and could lose Kevin Zeitler. 

The Bengals should be interested in free agent Nick Mangold.

Pro Football Focus' latest mock draft would be ideal for the Bengals. 

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Email me: JamesRapien@espn1530.com

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