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NFL Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati Bengals’ Quiet, Impressive Off-Season Continues with Adam Jones Re-Signing

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Slowly but surely, the Cincinnati Bengals are starting to make moves during this off-season. The headline making free agents may be all gone, but after re-signing Rey Maualuga earlier this week and  keeping Kevin Huber before that, the Bengals have again re-signed a key role player in the form of Adam Jones.

According to Jones’ Twitter account, he agreed to sign a three=year deal with the Bengals.

At 29 years of age, the former first round pick is coming off arguably his most impressive season since 2006, when he was a full-time starter. Jones played 626 snaps over the whole season as the team’s third cornerback. He spent time inside covering slot receivers and on the edge covering outside receivers in the Bengals’ nickel defense.

Jones gave up 37 receptions on 69 targets and two touchdowns. However, quarterbacks had an average of an 81.9 quarterback rating when throwing his way, which is not bad for a third-choice cornerback.

His flexibility to rush the passer, cover receivers in aggressive man-coverage or drop into a zone allowed Mike Zimmer to be flexible with his play-calling and formations. As a playmaker, he only managed one forced fumble and one sack with no interceptions.

However, Jones’ playmaking came on special teams where he was one of the better returners in the league. On 26 punt returns, Jones averaged 11.6 yards per return for a total over 300 yards. He had a long of 81 for one touchdown, but also contributed three 20+ yard returns and two 40+ yard returns. Jones was very impressive statistically, but he always appeared just one broken tackle away from taking it to the endzone.

Re-signing Jones allows the Bengals to retain a good contributor at cornerback, while keeping some continuity that is lacking overall in a depleted secondary. If this is the first step before re-signing Terence Newman, then the move will be made all the better for the Bengals.