One of the top free agent defensive linemen remaining in the NFL is reportedly no longer on the market. The Cincinnati Bengals will sign defensive tackle Mike Daniels in the next day or so, per head coach Zac Taylor. The deal is worth up to $2.7 million, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Daniels, 31, spent the 2019 season with the Detroit Lions and played nine games. He finished with 10 tackles, a sack, and two quarterback hits in just 204 snaps. Prior to joining Detroit, Daniels spent the first seven seasons of his career with the Green Bay Packers and made the Pro Bowl in 2017. Daniels had 32 pressures, two sacks and five quarterback hits in 418 snaps in his final season in Green Bay (2018) before his surprising release from the Packers just days before the start of 2019 training camp.
If Daniels does join the Bengals, it's an opportunity for him to revitalize his career. The Bengals needed more depth at defensive tackle after Josh Tupou informed the team late last month he's opting out of 2020 due to the concerns regarding coronavirus. Bengals linebackers coach Al Golden was with Daniels in Detroit as a member of the Lions coaching staff, so there's some familiarity there.
Cincinnati has an impressive collection of starting defensive tackles in Geno Atkins and D.J. Reader. Renell Wren, a 2019 fourth-round pick, has played just 11 games in his career while Trey Dishon is an undrafted free agent signing, so there isn't much depth behind the two starters. Dishon recorded 95 tackles, including 15.5 for loss and eight sacks in his four years at Kansas State, but he'll be fighting for a roster spot with Daniels in the mix.
The Bengals finished dead last in run defense last season, allowing 148.9 yards on the ground per game. While Daniels is more of a pass-rushing specialist (he has played defensive end in a 3-4 scheme as well), any added boost the Bengals get helps as the season draws near.