CINCINNATI — The Bengals completely remade their defense this offseason. They signed five projected starters in free agency, including three members of the secondary — Trae Waynes, Mackensie Alexander and Vonn Bell.
Those aren't the only new defensive backs that they brought in this offseason. Defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo likes what he's seen from the back end of the cornerback room.
"Don’t sleep on LeShaun Sims. Don’t sleep on Winston Rose. Those guys are guys that have been successful," Anarumo said on Wednesday. "Winston up in Canada, having all those interceptions the last couple of years. LeShaun Sims has played meaningful football in big games. They’re all big guys. They all have length to them. It’s exciting."
Rose, 26, led the CFL with nine interceptions last season. He has 14 picks combined over the past two years.
He signed a reserve/future contract with the Bengals in December.
Sims has appeared in at least 13 games for the Titans in each of his four NFL seasons. He played anywhere from 20-40 percent of the snaps on defense for Tennessee and was also a key contributor on special teams.
Both players are competing for a roster spot, but it's good to hear Anarumo praise the back end of the cornerback room.
With William Jackson III entering the final year of his deal and Alexander on a one-year contract, the Bengals need some of these young defensive backs to emerge this season.
Darius Phillips appears to have the fourth cornerback spot locked up, which means Sims and Rose will battle Torry McTyer, Tony Brown and Greg Mabin for one of the final spots on the roster.
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