Bengals get rid of Wilson, Dorsch
Posted: Sunday August 31, 2003 3:17PM; Updated: Sunday August 31, 2003 3:17PM
CINCINNATI (AP) -- Former first-round draft pick Reinard Wilson and punter Travis Dorsch were among 13 players released Sunday by the Cincinnati Bengals.
Trying to make a break with their troubled past, the Bengals also cut linebacker Steve Foley, receiver Danny Farmer, linebacker Armegis Spearman, tight end Sean Brewer, center Thatcher Szalay and safety Lamont Thompson.
Rookies J'Waren Blair, Ray Jackson, Belton Johnson, Langston Moore and Kevin Walker also were waived.
Wilson was a prominent example of why the Bengals remained the NFL's doormat through the 1990s even though they had one high draft pick after another.
They passed on linebackers Jamie Sharper and Dwayne Rudd in the 1997 draft, taking Wilson with the 14th overall pick and converting him from defensive end to linebacker.
He agreed to a five-year deal that included a $2.6 million signing bonus, but never came close to meeting expectations.
Wilson failed to adapt in three seasons as an outside linebacker, prompting the Bengals to use him primarily as a pass rusher. They moved him to end and watched him struggle there, as well.
With his contract set to run out, Wilson had his best season with the Bengals in 2001, getting a team-high nine sacks. The Bengals gave him a three-year extension, and he went back to being a nonfactor -- no sacks in 16 games last season.
Wilson had only 24 sacks in six years and 93 games with the Bengals, placing him on the list of Bengals first-round busts since 1992. David Klingler, Dan Wilkinson, Ki-Jana Carter and Akili Smith also failed to pan out.