June 28, 2017

Coming Off the Ledge Over J-Joe

Can the Bengals live without number 22? I say "yes"

I realize that most of us wanted J-Joe back, but in reality, is this really the devastating hit to the defense everyone is making it out to be? 

I’m not so sure. 

As much as I would have loved to see him back, it’s likely more important to the team that Leon Hall be secured long term.  Hall is more dependable in coverage and less injury-prone (not to mention slightly younger). Hall is a tactician that can be counted on to be in the right place at all times, and consistently grades out better than Joseph. 

My impression of Joseph has been that he’s had too many foot ailments, and on the field he is less disciplined and more mistake-prone than Hall. Plus there’s that marijuana arrest and suspension from 2008. 

Of course it would be best to keep them both, but if the reality is that the Bengals probably couldn’t have both, especially knowing what the Texans gave Joseph (48.75 million over 5 years).  This being the case, Hall’s the one I’d keep. 

Looking at the depth the team has at DB, there’s still Adam Jones, who is cleared to practice as a clearly able replacement.  The issues with him of course being that he is coming off a serious neck injury, and may face league suspensions for his most recent altercation with Cincinnati’s finest. 

After Jones, the Bengals have Morgan Trent, Hall’s former teammate who has starting experience, 2nd-year player Brandon Ghee, journeymen Fred Bennett and Jonathan Wade, plus rookie Korey Lindsey. 

The team could also now pursue other options on the market, like Nate Clements, Antonio Cromartie, Carlos Rogers, and Richard Marshall. 

Call me crazy, but I think if Adam Jones, Morgan Trent, Jonathan Wade and Brandon Ghee are healthy, the team will be okay, especially if they add at least one corner from the market. 

The Bengals need to focus their attention at running back anyway, especially now that one of their targets, Brandon Jackson, has signed with the Browns.


  1. Scott aka wvugodfather says:

    This is totally wrong…Joseph is needed in Cincinnati. There’s more than enough money that HAS to be spent to have kept Joseph. He is a better overall corner than Hall, every expert says this. There is plenty of money to take care of the other needs especially since more cap space was cleared with the trading of Ocho. The Jets are willing to spend $$$ to have the two best corners…so obviously a smart franchise thinks there is a premium for having two solid corners, not just one and some pieces you hope will be satisfactory.

    • Hall consistently grades out better than Joseph, and if the team could only keep one, Hall is the one to keep. Of course, that means they’ll need to re-sign Hall. It would have been nice to see the team do what it needed to but this outcome should not have been unexpected.

      Jones, if healthy, can perform at least as a nickel corner, and he showed great playmaking ability last year before the injury with big plays in the Atlanta and Tampa games in particular. With Joseph injured last year the secondary held up fairly well. It now comes down to Mike Brown to bring in someone who won’t be a liability.

  2. Seeing Joseph head elsewhere is really not a big surprise to me. MB will always walk away from a bidding war (and the rest of the NFL knows that). And with Joseph having said that he would like to stay in Cincy, I fully expect that he was hoping for a little hometown discount.

    That said, the secondary has taken a big hit with Joseph walking. They were already weak at safety, and now losing half of that corner duo hurts. I am not convinced that Jones will stay healthy enough to be considered the answer, and Ghee hasn’t had a real shot to know what he can or can’t do. But they clearly need to pick up at least to known commodities to solidify this secondary.

  3. I like Hall better too, but I think the team dropped the ball. According to ScoutsInc., there’s a droppoff now between J-Jo and any free agent they could get. The team could have created some leverage with the franchise tag, then worked to get a longer-term deal.