Bengals release Adams

May 14, 2007

Posted: 2:30 p.m.

Just 13 months after signing three-time Pro Bowler Sam Adams to anchor their run defense, the Bengals terminated his contract Monday to make way for younger defensive tackles.

The move comes the same day they announced signing Kenderick Allen, a fifth-year player with the Packers in 2006, two weeks after they drafted Oregon’s Matt Toeaina in the sixth round, and three weeks after they signed Denver’s Michael Myers in free agency. The move also basically assures second-year man Domata Peko starts next to John Thornton in the middle of the Bengals 4-3.

The move doesn’t appear to be made for salary-cap reasons, given that the Bengals figure to save only $700,000 by cutting Adams one year into his three–year deal. He was scheduled to make $1.5 million, but the acceleration of his $1.2 million signing bonus takes up $800,000.

Adams, who turns 34 next month, started all 16 games last season. But after he spent the spring and much of training camp off the field with the strength and conditioning staff, he injured a knee in his only preseason appearance and ended up as part of a tackle rotation that saw the emergence of Peko and required arthroscopic surgery after the season.

Before arthroscopic surgery following the season, Adams finished with 25 tackles, two sacks, and a pass defensed compared to Peko’s 49 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and a forced fumble.