Could the Cincinnati Bengals Make a Play for WR Mike Wallace?

Why have the Cincinnati Bengals been so silent during free agency, despite having the most money to work with in all of the AFC North?Yes, they’ve been meeting with players and more visits are scheduled for early next week, but they’ve yet to make a move.let me throw one possibility out there: the Bengals are thinking of making an offer to Pittsburgh Steelers restricted free agent wide receiver Mike Wallace.the Bengals went into free agency with around $40 million in cap space to work with and have yet to add a single player.Wide receiver has been widely regarded as an area they’d explore in free agency, but with the majority of the top playmakers already spoken for, it makes one wonder what the Bengals’ strategy just might be.thanks to Cincinnati’s two most high-profile players being drafted in 2011, they won’t have a bad cap situation in 2012 or 2013, leaving them with room to spend for years to come.that means that not only can the Bengals afford Wallace in 2012, they can afford him in 2013 and beyond, even at $9 million per year over five years.once Wallace’s contract is up (or needs extending), it won’t line up with Dalton and Green’s potential extensions, making the finances almost a negligible part of the deal, should they choose to make them.further, the Bengals can afford to snag Wallace without completely dropping out of the first round of this year’s draft. the Steelers gave Wallace a first-round RFA tender, meaning the team that signs him would have to give their 2012 first round pick to Pittsburgh.the Bengals have two picks in the first round, so it’s considerably less risky of an addition than it would be for other teams. Where FA WR Brandon Lloyd lands might be the key to whether Cincy pursues Wallace Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images if Cincinnati is interested in Wallace, there are a few reasons why they have yet to make a move.one is that they’re watching to see how the situation with free agent receiver Brandon Lloyd plays out. Lloyd is considered a major target for the New England Patriots, but he’s also visiting the San Francisco 49ers.both the 49ers and Patriots are also considered in play for Wallace’s services; if the Patriots lose Lloyd to the 49ers, then they might come calling for Wallace, but if the Patriots get their man, the 49ers, while in play, are less likely to land him.It’s possible that the Bengals don’t want to get into a bidding war with a team like the Patriots, so perhaps they are waiting until they know whether the Patriots will make a move for Wallace before doing so themselves.Imagine it—A.J. Green on one side and Mike Wallace on the other.the Bengals’ receiving corps easily becomes one of the best in the NFL, and are likely to remain that way for years.it doesn’t seem that far-fetched, when the money and strategy is concerned.the only question mark in this whole scenario, of course, is how interested the Bengals may be in Wallace—if they’re even interested at all.But, after examining the possibility here, I would be surprised if the idea hadn’t at least crossed the minds of members of their front office and coaching staff in recent days and weeks.it would be a smart and savvy move; a wise use of their considerable funds.if I had a say in Cincy, I’d certainly go for it. Follow @FBALL_Andrea

Could the Cincinnati Bengals Make a Play for WR Mike Wallace?


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