Cincinnati inked Baker to a one-year, $2.45MM deal in March in the hopes that he’d become its starting nose tackle opposite All-Pro three-technique Geno Atkins. However, Baker struggled during the preseason, often getting defeated in both the run and pass game, and was severely outplayed by third-year pro Andrew Billings. The Bengals released Baker just prior to final cutdowns, and he hasn’t drawn any other known interest thus far.
Baker, 30, spent the 2017 campaign with the Buccaneers after signing a three-year pact last March. Although he’d played like of the league’s better interior defenders from 2015-16, Baker struggled in 2017, grading as just the No. 96 defensive tackle among 122 qualifiers, per Pro Football Focus, and was subsequently released after only a single season in Tampa Bay.
Detroit attempted to fortify its interior defensive line this offseason after losing veteran Haloti Ngata by adding several free agents of their own. Defensive tackles Ricky Jean-Francois and Sylvester Williams were each inked to contracts, while versatile lineman Da’Shawn Hand was brought in via the draft.
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