This shouldn’t come as an immense shock, especially in hindsight, but from the sounds of it, the Cincinnati Bengals intend to move on from Cordy Glenn, whom they once acquired via trade in order to be their starting left tackle. The 2019 season was a tumultuous one for him to say the least, however, among other reasons.
For one thing, he was acquired via trade from a prior Bengals regime, with even a different offensive line coach, so they don’t have ties to him. The first player that new head coach Zac Taylor drafted was Jonah Williams—a left tackle. He was already penciled in to be Cincinnati’s starting left tackle on opening day, with Glenn working at left guard, but he suffered an injury in the offseason that knocked him out for the entire year.
Glenn himself suffered a concussion during the preseason, and it lingered quite a while. He was thoroughly unsatisfied with the way the team handled it, believing that they were rushing him back from the concussion. At one point, he blew up at an unspecified coach and even yelled at Taylor to release him.
They didn’t, but they did suspend him, and once he returned to practice, he was a ‘healthy’ scratch for most of the rest of the season. Add in the fact that releasing him will save close to $10 million in salary cap space, and the decision becomes an obvious one to make.
The Bengals hired Bill Callahan to coach their offensive line this offseason. He said that he expects Williams to be “a difference” for the team, which has seen the quality of its offensive line play diminish over the past several seasons.
The Bengals had one of the great left tackles in the league in Andrew Whitworth, whom they eventually let go in free agency, having recently drafted some young left tackles, though they ultimately proved to be busts, neither of whom is with the team any longer. One of them isn’t even a tackle anymore.
Callahan alluded to former Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman Fred Johnson, a 2019 undrafted free agent who spent a lot of time on the 53-man roster before being waived to open up a roster spot at another position.
The Steelers hoped to add him to the practice squad, but the Bengals claimed him off waivers. Capable of playing either guard or tackle, he ended up playing 146 snaps, even making one start at left tackle, for Cincinnati over the final six games. He should be in competition for either the left guard or right tackle jobs for 2020.