Why the Cincinnati Bengals did not re-sign safety/corner Chris Crocker before the beginning of the 2013 NFL season is puzzling. Crocker can play both safety and slot corner in defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer’s defense and has been a very important part of it in recent years. Crocker’s return will help an already strong Bengals defense.
Crocker was re-signed hours before Wednesday’s practice. The circumstances of his re-signing on Wednesday were similar to those of his re-signing last year. The secondary of the Bengals defense was plagued by injury, including Crocker, who was coming off knee surgery.
This year is a little different. Cornerback Leon Hall missed practice this week with a hamstring problem, as did starting safety Reggie Nelson. Cornerback Terence Newman has been limited in practice because of a knee injury. The difference is that Crocker is healthy this year. It is a very good time for the Bengals to re-sign him.
One of the reasons why this was such a good move on the Bengals’ part is because Crocker is a veteran who already knows Zimmer’s defense. Despite coming off an injury and starting late in the season last year, Crocker had 41 tackles and was tied for the team lead in interceptions with Nelson with three each. In 2011, Crocker had 61 tackles, 3.5 sacks and one forced fumble.
Crocker is a very important part of a very good Bengals defense. They need some experience in the slot, and Crocker is sure to provide that for them.