The Bengals got their guy Wednesday, agreeing to terms with the receiver whom coach Marvin Lewis reportedly coveted all along — Antonio Bryant.
While the paperwork on the deal — reported to be a four-year, $28 million contract — is being finalized, the focus can be turned forward. Can Bryant remedy what ailed the Bengals’ passing game?
Checking in with NFL.com senior analyst Pat Kirwan, he believes Bryant can stretch the field for the Bengals. While he won’t consistently draw double-coverage to his side of the field, Bryant’s presence benefits QB Carson Palmer and WR Chad Ochocinco.
“The Bengals got a lot of opportunities in the middle of the field for Ochocinco when Chris Henry was playing on the outside,” Kirwan observed. “That will happen again.”
NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock views the addition of Bryant as an upgrade over the other receivers on the Bengals’ roster — Andre Caldwell, Matt Jones and Jerome Simpson.
“They needed a playmaker,” Mayock said. “They need playmakers on offense. Whether it was T.O., or whether it was Bryant, I’m OK with either of those guys. It upgrades what they already have, and it gives them a playmaker.”