When free agency opens next month, there will be some big-name cornerbacks hitting the market. Cincinnati could use one, but it is unclear if the team will spend its considerable cap space on the position. For one, the team has already locked up Leon Hall long-term. And Nate Clements should be back for another season. So it would be a bit surprising if the team were to go after someone like Cortland Finnegan or Rashean Mathis. My guess is that the team will re-sign Kelly Jennings and rely on the emergence of Brandon Ghee and a potential draft pick.
If it were me, I would at least explore the market for both Finnegan and Mathis. Finnegan might be fiery and somewhat combustible (see: fistfight with Andre Johnson), but he is also a physical player with plenty of talent. Mathis, meanwhile, is moving toward the later stages of his career, but he also would be good insurance for Hall, who is not guaranteed to be back by the beginning of the season.
Perhaps one of them would even be willing to take a short-term deal (maybe two years) and hope for another shot at free agency in the near future. Neither scenario is likely, but the team should at least take a look.
Here’s a list of the cornerbacks who could be available in free agency this offseason.