Sources: Ex-Saint Bell to sign with Bengals

Former New Orleans Saints safety Vonn Bell is expected to sign with the Cincinnati Bengals, sources told ESPN.

Bell, who turned 25 in December, has shown steady improvement since being drafted in the second round out of Ohio State in 2016.

The 5-foot-11, 205-pounder was an every-down player for the Saints when healthy in 2019. He set a career high with 89 tackles in just 13 games played, and he reeled in his first career interception. He also led the NFL with five fumble recoveries in the regular season — then added a sixth in the Saints’ playoff loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

As valuable as Bell was to the Saints, he became somewhat expendable for the salary-cap-strapped team because of the emergence of 2019 rookie C.J. Gardner-Johnson.

Bell has settled in as a strong safety in recent years, though he showed the versatility to play both spots early in his career. He has nine career sacks and seven career forced fumbles, including the playoffs.

ESPN’s Mike Triplett contributed to this report.

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