Dre Kirkpatrick

Raiders To Sign Prince Amukamara

The Raiders are set to sign cornerback Prince Amukamara, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (on Twitter). The financial terms are not yet known, but Garafolo hears that everything is in place for a deal. 

The former first-round pick has been looking for work since he was cut by the Bears in February. His career began with the Giants, where he spent the first five seasons of his career. After that, he spent a year with the Jaguars before signing yet another one-year pact – this time with the Bears – in 2017. In 2018, they gave him a three-year, $27MM re-up, but he did not get to see the last year of that deal.

Amukamara was a key player in the Bears’ secondary as he started alongside Kyle Fuller. Now, he’ll spend his age-31 season and ninth pro year in Las Vegas.

Last year, Amukamara graded out as Pro Football Focus’ No. 41 corner in the NFL – he fared better in 2018, when the Bears had the league’s best D. For his career, Amukamara has started in 99 of his 113 games – he’s more or less been first-string for every campaign except his rookie year. With the Raiders, he’ll fight for his place alongside Trayvon Mullen, Damon Arnette, slot/safety Lamarcus Joyner, Amik Robertson, Isaiah Johnson, and Nevin Lawson.

If the Amukamara deal should fall though for some reason, look for Las Vegas to pivot to Dre Kirkpatrick. The longtime Bengal, whom Cincinnati released at the end of March, is a fallback option for the Raiders, per NFL insider Adam Caplan (via Twitter). It sounds as if the Raiders will not pursue Kirkpatrick if the Amukamara deal is finalized, but Las Vegas could probably stand to add another veteran CB to its depth chart.

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Vikings Have Dre Kirkpatrick On The Radar

The Vikings are “kicking the tires” on Dre Kirkpatrick, according to KSTP’s Darren Wolfson (Twitter link). However, their interest is still in the preliminary stage.

[RELATED: Vikings Pursuing Anthony Harris Extension]

The Bengals dropped Kirkpatrick in late March to save $8.3MM against the cap while making room for former Vikings corner Trae Waynes, who inked a three-year, $42MM pact. If the Vikings sign Kirkpatrick, the two teams could wind up with a cornerback trade of sorts with Mackensie Alexander also headed to Cincy.

The history between Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer and Kirkpatrick could play a role here. Zimmer was on the Bengals’ coaching staff when they drafted Kirkpatrick in the first round of the 2012 draft. Meanwhile, new Vikings defensive backs coach Daronte Jones has spent the previous two seasons with the Bengals. There are connections aplenty, and Kirkpatrick may profile as a potential add at this stage of the offseason.

For his career, Kirkpatrick has 99 appearances to his credit over the course of eight seasons. Last year, his season was cut short by a hyperextended knee injury, leaving him with a stat line of 33 tackles, one sack, and one fumble recovery in six games. Before that, in 2018, he allowed just 44.4% of the targets thrown his way to be caught, good for the second-best rate in the NFL.

After losing Waynes, Alexander, and Rhodes, the Vikings are left with a green group of CBs. As it stands, Mike Hughes and Holton Hill profile as the team’s top corners.

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Bengals To Release Dre Kirkpatrick

The Bengals will release cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, according to ESPN.com’s Ben Baby (Twitter link). The move will save Cincy $8.3MM against the salary cap, giving them even more cash to work with in the second half of the offseason. 

Kirkpatrick is just the latest vet to be jettisoned by the Bengals. All in all, they’ve freed up more than $23MM by cutting veterans in the last couple of months.

The Kirkpatrick release doesn’t come as a surprise after the Bengals inked Trae Waynes to a three-year, $42MM deal that will pay him approximately $20MM in 2020. Kirkpatrick, a former first-round pick, should find plenty of interest from cornerback-needy teams, though his market will be somewhat limited since many teams have already addressed that gap.

Since 2012, Kirkpatrick has appeared in 99 games over the course of eight seasons. Last year, his season was cut short by a hyperextended knee injury. He finished out with 33 tackles, one sack, and one fumble recovery in six contests. In 2018, he allowed just 44.4% of the targets thrown his way to be caught, good for the second-best rate in the NFL.

The Bengals will also be moving forward without Darqueze Dennard, who left in free agency to sign with the Jaguars. Waynes will be among their new headliners and he’ll be joined by fellow ex-Viking Mackensie Alexander. Former Titans corner LeShaun Sims will also be in the CB mix.

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Bengals To Place Dre Kirkpatrick On IR

The Bengals have placed Dre Kirkpatrick on injured reserve, per a club announcement. In related moves, the team promoted linebacker Hardy Nickerson and wide receiver Damion Willis to the active roster. 

Kirkpatrick, 30, is in the midst of a five-year, $52.5MM deal he inked back in 2017. He’ll remain on the books for 2020, when he’s due a base salary of $9.4MM. Before he season-ending hyperextended knee injury, Kirkpatrick tallied 33 stops, one sack, and one fumble recovery across six games.

Last year, Kirkpatrick allowed just 44.4% of the targets thrown his way to be caught, good for the second-best rate in the league. That was good for second amongst all NFL cornerbacks with at least 400 coverage snaps.

The Bengals were hoping to get him back before the end of the season but, then again, they’re not playing for much at this point.

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Bengals Activate CB Darqueze Dennard

After a long hiatus, Darqueze Dennard is ready to return for the Bengals. The team, which re-signed the former first-round cornerback in March, activated him on Friday, Ben Baby of ESPN.com tweets.

Dennard will take Cordy Glenn‘s roster spot, with the Bengals having suspended their left tackle. This will provide a key cornerback reinforcement for the 0-6 team, especially with both Dre Kirkpatrick and William Jackson III out against the Jaguars.

Prior to re-upping with the Bengals, Dennard underwent a left knee surgery that was believed to be minor at the time. But he ended up missing the first six games of the season, due to the stay on Cincinnati’s PUP list.

The Bengals re-signed Dennard, their 2014 first-round pick, to a one-year deal worth $4.5MM. He will now have a chance to make an impression in another contract year.

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Bengals’ Dre Kirkpatrick To Miss Time

Bengals cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick will miss amount a month with a hyperextended knee, sources tell NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter). The veteran may have a clearer picture after seeing a specialist on Tuesday, but it would be a shock if he plays in Week 7. 

Kirkpatrick was carted off the field during Sunday’s game against the Ravens. That marked the Bengals’ sixth loss of the year and they won’t have an easy time getting their first W against the Jaguars without one of their starting corners in action.

Kirkpatrick had an opportunity to leave in March of 2017, but the Bengals cuffed him with a five-year, $52MM deal. Kirkpatrick’s deal is something of a pay-as-you-go agreement from here on out, but the Bengals should have every reason to keep him, regardless of whether they enter a complete rebuild this offseason.

Last year, Kirkpatrick allowed just 44.4% of the targets thrown his way to be caught, good for the second-best rate in the league. That was good for second amongst all NFL cornerbacks with at least 400 coverage snaps.

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WR A.J. Green Likely Out On Sunday

A.J. Green is set to miss his third straight game. NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport tweets that the Bengals have listed their star wide receiver as doubtful for tomorrow’s game against the Browns.

Rapoport notes that Green believed that he might be able to play through his toe injury, but he was still kept out of practice all week. ESPN’s Josina Anderson echoes (via Twitter) that Green won’t end up playing tomorrow, but he’s aiming for a return next weekend against the Broncos. Anderson adds that Green tested the toe today and saw signs of improvement, and there’s optimism that he’ll soon return to the field.

The 30-year-old was having another productive season, as he hauled in 45 receptions for 687 yards and six touchdowns through eight games. While the Bengals have lost both of their games without Green, the team still has plenty of offensive depth. Tyler Boyd and John Ross will continue to lead the receiver corps, while running backs Giovani Bernard and Joe Mixon will also provide Andy Dalton with reliable targets.

Michael David Smith of ProFootballTalk.com notes that the Bengals also downgraded cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick from questionable to doubtful for tomorrow’s game. The 29-year-old has been battling a shoulder injury throughout the week. Cincinnati will likely turn to some combination of Darqueze DennardTony McRae, and Darius Phillips with Kirkpatrick out of the lineup.

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Extra Points: Bucs, Koetter, Bears, Parkey, Bengals, Kirkpatrick

After a promising start, the Buccaneers have spiraled downward. The team is now 3-6, they’ve shuffled between Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick multiple times, and the offense is completely in the tank. The defense has been historically bad, and coach Dirk Koetter is firmly on the hot seat.

In a move seemingly made out of desperation, Koetter took back play-calling duties from offensive coordinator Todd Monken for the team’s loss to the Redskins, according to Jenna Laine of ESPN.com. Monken had been calling plays all season, and had been widely praised for the Bucs’ initial offensive success. Whatever Koetter was trying to accomplish clearly didn’t work, as the Buccaneers scored just three points today. A move might not be made until the end of the season, but it seems pretty clear Koetter’s time with the organization is coming to an end.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Bears kicker Cody Parkey missed two field goals and two extra points today against Detroit, but Chicago coach Matt Nagy ruled out replacing him after the game, according to ESPN.com. Parkey has now missed five field goals this season, but Nagy flat-out rejected the notion the team would look for a new kicker. Parkey missed a potential game-winner in overtime against the Dolphins a few weeks back.
  • The Bengals were demolished by the Saints at home today, and their already injury depleted defense got even more bad news. Starting cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick was ruled out for the game with a concussion and is currently in the concussion protocol, according to Katherine Terrell of ESPN.com (Twitter link). The Bengals are already down multiple starters on defense, so they can’t afford to be without Kirkpatrick.
  • In case you missed it, the Steelers are expected to place the transition tag on Le’Veon Bell this offseason.

AFC Contract Details: Gilmore, Kirkpatrick

The latest contract details from the AFC (all Twitter links):

  • Cornerback Stephon Gilmore‘s five-year, $65MM accord with the Patriots includes an $18MM signing bonus, reports Mike Reiss of ESPN.com. The arrangement comes with a fully guaranteed $31MM through 2018 and $9MM guaranteed for injury only in 2019. It contains up to $500K in per-game roster bonuses each year, as well (via Ben Volin of the Boston Globe).
  • Fellow corner Dre Kirkpatrick‘s Bengals deal, worth $52.5MM over a five years, includes $15MM in 2017, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today. The contract features another $2.5MM in incentives. It’s essentially a pay-as-you agreement after 2018, notes CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, who adds that Kirkpatrick got $7MM to sign, $12MM in guarantees, and will make $23.2MM during the first two years of the contract.
  • Guard Ronald Leary‘s pact with the Broncos is worth $36MM over four years and will receive $18.75MM guaranteed, writes Mike Klis of 9NEWS. Leary will collect a $3.5MM signing bonus.
  • Newly re-upped Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills landed a $7MM signing bonus, according to Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald.
  • Fullback Patrick DiMarco‘s four-year deal with the Bills features $4.8MM in guarantees, more than the originally reported $4MM, per Wilson. It also comes with a $2MM bonus and an annual workout bonus worth $59K.
  • Safety Nate Allen‘s contract with the Dolphins is for one year and $3.4MM, relays Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald.
  • The Titans gave linebacker Nate Palmer $2.3MM over two years, writes Paul Kuharsky of ESPN.com. He also received a signing bonus worth $850K.
  • Tight end David Johnson‘s agreement with the Steelers is worth $2.05MM over two years, per Wilson. It includes a $235K signing bonus and a $915K roster bonus.

Bengals To Re-Sign Dre Kirkpatrick

One of the top cornerbacks on the UFA market won’t end up spending much time there. The Bengals agreed to a deal to retain sixth-year corner Dre Kirkpatrick, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The contract is for five years and nearly $52.5MM, reports Paul Dehner Jr. of The Cincinnati Enquirer (via Twitter).Dre Kirkpatrick (Vertical)

This comes after the Bengals put together “strong money” in an offer to hold off the Steelers for Kirkpatrick. The former first-round pick drew interest from the Steelers and Titans but will stay in Cincinnati. The Bengals eased the former Alabama product into a role, developing him as an off-the-bench presence until inserting Kirkpatrick into the lineup in 2015. He’s been a full-time starter for the past two seasons and has nine career interceptions, three of the thefts coming last year.

This should help set the cornerback market, coming after Stephon Gilmore‘s agreement to join the Patriots. Several corners remain on the market, but the top targets are beginning to go. A.J. Bouye has just agreed to join the Jaguars, leaving players like Logan Ryan, Prince Amukamara and Morris Claiborne as the top outside cover men left.

The Kirkpatrick deal could become even more critical to the immediate future of the Bengals’ secondary depending on what happens with Adam Jones. His latest arrest has cast some doubt on another season in Cincinnati despite the Bengals re-signing Jones last year in free agency.

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