Late Monday night the Cincinnati Bengals acquired safety Taylor Mays from the San Francisco 49ers for an undisclosed draft pick.
While Mays was a disappointment in San Francisco, Bengals’ head coach Marvin Lewis plans to use Mays soon. The veteran defensive coach sounded excited to work with Mays, whose physical skills are as good as anyone in the NFL.
Lewis told Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer the following:
“He’s someone coming out of the draft we did extensive work on and felt like he was a good prospect. It gives us a young player who is starting out in his career and has demonstrated good skills at USC and a real mental aptitude to play defense in the NFL.”
Mays jumped right in and practiced with his new team on Tuesday and it is uncertain whether or not he’ll actually participate in Cincinnati’s game on Thursday night.
The 23-year-old Seattle native never really got a chance to do anything with the 49ers and was basically run out of town before he even got on the field. He’s 6’3, 230 pounds and can run a 4.3 40. He’s also (by virtually all accounts) a really good, smart kid. If you can’t turn that kind of guy and athletic freak into a productive NFL player you need to fire your coaching staff. If Mays doesn’t turn out to be great at safety, then make him an outside linebacker and just let him run around and hit people.
Hopefully Mays gets a fair shake in Cincinnati.