Former Vikings first-round pick expected to make Bengals debut in Week 4

(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Trae Waynes
(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Trae Waynes /

Former Minnesota Vikings cornerback Trae Waynes is on track to make his on-field debut for the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday night after signing with them in 2020.

After five seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, cornerback Trae Waynes decided to take his talents to the AFC North during the 2020 offseason and sign with the Cincinnati Bengals.

Unfortunately for Waynes and the Bengals, the former Vikings cornerback has yet to appear in a regular-season game for this new team. After missing all of the 2020 season because of a pectoral injury, an injured hamstring is what has kept Waynes from playing during Cincinnati’s first three matchups of the 2021 campaign.

However, his absence from the field is expected to come to an end on Thursday night when the Bengals take on the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Former Minnesota Vikings cornerback expected to suit up for Cincinnati Bengals in Week 4

Waynes hasn’t appeared in a meaningful NFL game since the 2019 season when he and the Vikings lost in the divisional round of the playoffs to the San Francisco 49ers.

So if he takes the field for Cincinnati on Thursday, one should expect his performance to be at least a little rusty. Luckily, Waynes will be facing a Jaguars offense that ranks 24th in the NFL this year in average yards gained per play (5.1).

Even without the former Minnesota cornerback in the lineup, the Bengals‘ defense has improved by a significant amount this season when compared to how they performed in 2020.

After their first three games, Cincinnati ranks sixth in points allowed, eighth in yards allowed, fourth in yards per pass attempt allowed, and fifth in yards allowed per rushing attempt.

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Against an 0-3 Jacksonville team on Thursday night, Waynes and the rest of the Bengals’ defense should continue to have success.