3:28pm: The Browns, mentioned below as a potential suitor for Sanu, are indeed expected to pursue him in free agency, a source tells Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com. The source added that former Bengals OC Hue Jackson “loved Sanu’s versatility.”
8:38am: The Bengals have multiple wide receivers eligible to hit the open market in March, and at least one of them is unlikely to return to Cincinnati. According to Alex Marvez of FOX Sports, there’s “virtually no chance” that the Bengals re-sign Mohamed Sanu, who is expected to explore other opportunities in free agency.
Sanu, 26, established new career highs in 2014 with 56 receptions, 790 receiving yards, and five touchdowns. However, with fellow free-agent-to-be Marvin Jones back in the mix for Cincinnati in 2015, Sanu took on a decreased role in the Bengals’ offense. Receiving half the targets that he did the year before, the former third-round pick saw his numbers dip to 33 catches and 394 yards, and he didn’t record a single touchdown. Sanu admits that he’d like a bigger role going forward, wherever he lands.
“I think about that all the time,” Sanu told Marvez on SiriusXM NFL Radio. “When you’ve got so much talent on one team, it’s hard to get the ball. It definitely crossed my mind going elsewhere. We’ve just got to see how everything unfolds.”
While Sanu’s contract year wasn’t overly impressive, he’s expected to draw interest from multiple teams in free agency, including perhaps the Browns, Falcons, and Giants, writes Marvez. This year’s wide receiver market isn’t strong, so once the top two or three options come off the board, the Bengals wideout could become a more attractive target for teams that need to upgrade the position, particularly since so many clubs will have cap space on hand. One report earlier this week estimated a deal worth $5MM annually for Sanu.
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