Blog Entry

Bengals tag T.J. . . no, wait . . . Shayne???

Posted on: February 20, 2009 11:12 am
Edited on: February 20, 2009 11:20 am

When the Bengals stuck the franchise tag on Shayne Graham earlier this week, I nearly fell off my chair. Here's a link to the story on

And here is T.J. Houshmandzadeh's reaction to that announcement.

I like Shayne Graham. I like T.J. Houshmandzadeh. Both have provided great value to the Bengals. The tag gives Graham a one-year $2.48 million deal, though Graham said he would have preferred "a long-term market value contract" either with the Bengals or through free agency.

And this move virtually assures that Housh is headed out the door. All Bengals' fans have had some time to mull this over. Some believe the team will be OK without him. I would like for him to stay for the leadership he provides to the wide receiver corps and the young guys now rising through the ranks among them. I suppose I will have to get used to the idea of Housh in a different uniform, barring a shocking announcement from the Bengals that they have reached a long-term deal that will work for them and for Housh. I just don't have confidence that anyone can step up and be the leader Housh has been the last few years. To replace that leadership, the Bengals likely will have to step into the free-agent market for a big-name, big-reputation wide receiver.

I'm happy for Shayne. He has done enough for the team to deserve that kind of dough. But I'm not sure what the move says about the overall thinking being employed right now by what passes for a brain trust with the Bengals. Tag a place kicker and let arguably one of your best players walk away, again? Sheesh.


Since: Oct 12, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2009 12:16 pm

Bengals tag T.J. . . no, wait . . . Shayne???

Trea -- I often think there are contradictory forces working within the Bengals, tearing them in different directions so that the team really can't get a steady footing and move forward. Too much depends on absolutely everything going right. They aren't resilient enough to have a plan of attack that inlcludes dealing with contingencies, e.g., Carson Palmer's injury last year, to be able to compete effectively on a year to year basis.

As I've posted on the Bengals' message board, Carson Palmer had better come back 100 percent from last year's injury. If he doesn't, the team won't have a snowball's chance in . . .

Since: Dec 11, 2006
Posted on: February 22, 2009 10:49 am

Bengals tag T.J. . . no, wait . . . Shayne???

Wow.  Franchise a PK!?!?  Graham is really good but that is a steep price to pay for kicking.  Not just in his salary but possibly losing the Housh on top of it.  I am a Cowboy fan and agree with Jerry Jones philosophy of not overpaying for PKs.  It's worked pretty well as Dallas has always found better than capable PK's.  The one time Jerry overpaid in the free agent market for a kicker it backfired (Vanderjadt).  To possibly lose a team leader and go-to WR adds insult to injury and futher shows the ineptitute of the Bengals ownership and front office, especially with the problems surrounding Ocho Cinco, who was a second #1 wideout until his ego ate him up, and Chris Henry, who was a great #3 WR before he found his way into trouble that could be pushing him out of football.  I am in a keeper FF league with IDPs and picked up Carson Palmer late in the year thinking I could have a franchise QB and end my years of revolving door QB's.  Losing Housh would change that IMO. 

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