Doing a little Bengals roster math


CINCINNATI -- How far away are the Cincinnati Bengals to filling out their preseason 90-man roster?

They are exactly 22 positions away.

With Cedric Peerman's re-signing Wednesday, the Bengals signed their 68th player to a contract for the upcoming season. Not all the players on their eventual 90-man roster (not to mention all the ones on the current roster) will end up making the final team when training-camp battles come to an end in early September and final cuts are made.

Before getting to the final cuts, they have to go into August's training camp with a deep roster to work out and as full a team as they're permitted to have.

That's why between now and the start of camp, you'll see the Bengals continue making a few moves. Specifically, as of now, they have 22 moves to go. They still could sign or re-sign a few veteran free agents. They'll also get the final 22 spots filled by signing their draft picks, and other rookies in the post-draft college free-agency frenzy.

Here's some quick roster math that shows how they could get to it. To reiterate, these numbers are all projections of what the Bengals could do:

Veteran free agents: Three potential spots available

It's reasonable to believe the Bengals have 3-4 available roster spots for veteran free-agent additions, considering what they probably will do in the draft and post-draft process. If we assume the Bengals will try to sign three more veteran free agents, we have to believe at least two will be players who didn't spend the 2014 season with the Bengals. Tight end Jermaine Gresham, a Bengals 2010 first-round draft pick, has the best chance of returning of all the Bengals' four remaining unrestricted free agents. It all depends in part upon his recovery from recent back surgery.

Draft picks: Nine spots

For now, the Bengals have nine draft picks, thanks to a two-pick coup as part of the compensatory award process.

Undrafted free agents: 10 spots

It wouldn't be much of a surprise to see the Bengals hold off on signing one or two of the veteran free agents until after the draft. Doing so would will give them a measure of flexibility in respect to the number of undrafted free agents they can sign in the hours after the draft. For now, it's best to assume the Bengals will be adding an additional 10 players who went undrafted. That's about the norm for post-draft signings. Last season, they ended up signing 11. Other players currently under contract could be cut between now and the end of the draft, giving the Bengals additional spots. For now, though, this is a basic roadmap for where they could be going with their next series of personnel moves.