With injuries at cornerback and defensive end, the Bengals claimed two young players off the waiver wire and cut two wide receivers to make room just before Wednesday's practice.
For the time being.
It's doubtful the Bengals are going to go with just five wide receivers, so there may be other moves coming after they released six-year vet Mike Thomas and first-year player Trenton Irwin while claiming rookie cornerback Nick McCloud, released by the Bills, and second-year edge Wyatt Ray, released by the Titans.
With cornerback Trae Waynes (hamstring) expected to be inactive for at least the Sept. 12 opener, his replacement (Eli Apple) coming off a hamstring issue of his known and Darius Phillips nursing his knee, the Bengals picked up a seventh cornerback in McCloud, a 6-1, 190-pounder possessing the length the Bengals seek at that position.
After viewing McCloud's preseason tape, the Bengals claimed him instead of keeping their own undrafted rookie cornerback, Antonio Phillips out of Ball State. McCloud played four years at North Carolina State, but got hurt in the first game of his final season and played the next year at Notre Dame. He had a college stat line of 138 total tackles, four interceptions, 28 passes defended, and three fumble recoveries.
The 6-3, 255-pound Ray played four games for Tennessee last year and started one with a sack after making it undrafted out of Boston College. After he played in Sunday's preseason finale, the Bengals opted to cut Noah Spence and fill his spot the edge with Spence off his preseason tape.
They did put Spence on the practice squad, but not Phillips.