Trae Waynes pleased with new contract, optimistic about Bengals' future

James Rapien

The Bengals shocked the football world on March 17 when they agreed to terms with defensive tackle D.J. Reader and cornerback Trae Waynes.

Cincinnati isn’t known for their spending in free agency and yet they committed $95 million to two defensive players.

Waynes signed a 3-year, $42 million contract with the Bengals. The former first-round pick was excited to get a deal of that caliber.

“It works for me, sh--,” Waynes said with a laugh on the Rapsheet and Friends podcast. “The cornerback market was interesting this year. What did Byron (Jones) get, like $16 [million] or something? And then (James) Bradbury — what’d he get, like $14.5 [million]? It’s interesting. I just wanted to get somewhere close to those guys. I can’t complain. It all worked out.”

Waynes, 27, had seven interceptions in five seasons with the Vikings. He said Miami, Carolina and New York were also interested in him during free agency. The Dolphins ended up signing Byron Jones and the Giants brought in James Bradberry from the Panthers.

Waynes said the Bengals offered him the best deal. Cincinnati also signed Mackensie Alexander and Vonn Bell. Mackensie spent four years with Waynes in Minnesota. All three defensive backs are expected to be significant contributors this season.

The Bengals’ secondary consists of three corners and two safeties that are all 27 years old or younger.

Waynes was pleased with Cincinnati’s aggressiveness in free agency

“From the sounds of it, they’re making a lot of strong moves to become really competitive,” he said.

The Bengals hope Waynes and the rest of the 2020 free agent class can be the start of a turnaround in Cincinnati.  

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