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- Bengals Surprisingly Release LB Simmons

Chris Pokorny February 28, 2007
Chris Pokorny
PFC Owner & Writer

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In a somewhat surprising move, the Cincinnati Bengals released linebacker Brian Simmons on Wednesday. Simmons had two years remaining on his contract, and had been with the Bengals since they drafted him in the first round in 1998. Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis stated that cutting Simmons came down to money.

"This was not an easy decision to make," said Lewis. "Brian has been a fine player on the field, and he has been a great example to all of our players as a team leader and a citizen. But a new NFL year is about to begin with the start of free agency, and this allows us to best position our team under the salary cap to move forward for 2007. It will afford us options for signing other players who are a better overall fit, given the strengths and needs of our current roster."

Simmons' agent, Jerrold Colton, was surprised by the move.

"It is somewhat of a surprise," Colton said. "Brian has been a very important, long-standing part of the Cincinnati Bengals and is still performing at a top level."

The Bengals defense was not good last season, barring a small span near the end of the season. Simmons was one of the standout defensive players on the Bengals. Despite missing five games last season due to a strained neck, he finished fourth on the team in tackles.

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