The Bengals signed cornerback Trae Waynes with the hope that he’d be a big part of their defense in 2020, but he didn’t play a snap for them.
A pectoral injury knocked Waynes out for his first season in Cincinnati and delayed any return on the team’s investment until this year. Waynes is back on the field after what he called a “frustrating” season and said it is a relief to not “sit on the sidelines and do nothing anymore.”
Head coach Zac Taylor called Waynes’ return “really comforting” and that he can see what Waynes was able to learn about the defense from afar last season.
“He’s a guy we brought here for a reason. I really like his game. I studied him a lot over the years,” Taylor said, via Tyler Dragon of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “It’s really nice to get him back on the field. He’s seen a lot of football and played a lot of football. He’s played similar coverage types to what we have here. So, to the naked eye it appears to be second nature just watching him get out there and get adjusted to the scheme finally in person. I’m sure there are some nuances that takes some getting used to, but to me it really looks like he’s hit the ground running.”
The Bengals signed Chidobe Awuzie and Mike Hilton this offseason, so they are set to have a totally new look at cornerback even if Waynes is technically in his second season with the team.