The Cincinnati Bengals added another backup quarterback with a side of irony Wednesday when they signed John Skelton.
A fourth-year player out of Fordham, Skelton was waived by Arizona Cardinals on Monday when the team obtained former Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer in a trade with the Oakland Raiders.
“Yeah, it’s a little parody there, I guess,” Skelton said. “Carson is excited where he is now in Arizona. He’ll bring a lot to the table for the fans and team. I hope I can do the same in Cincinnati. Andy (Dalton) has done a great job replacing a guy who was established there in Carson. Whatever I can bring to the table, I’m going to do my best to do that.”
Skelton joins former Tampa Bay and Cleveland quarterback Josh Johnson, whom the Bengals signed March 23, and Zac Robinson in the battle to be Dalton’s backup in 2014.
“We’re glad to add John to cultivate a competitive situation behind Andy Dalton,” Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said in a press release. “He’s a young player (age 25), but he has had valuable experience starting and leading a team in the NFL.”
Selected in the fifth round of the 2010 draft, Skelton started the final four games of his rookie season after Derek Anderson got hurt. The following year he went 5-2 as a starter after Kevin Kolb suffered a midseason injury. Last year he beat out Kolb for the starting job but was injured in the second half of the season opener and missed the next four games before reclaiming the job in Week 7.
“The biggest thing is this league is such a week-to-week league,” said Skelton, who has completed 53.2 percent of his passes with 15 touchdowns and 25 interceptions in his career.
“It’s been a rollercoaster ride ever since I was drafted,” he added. “This past season wasn’t what anyone hoped for here in Arizona, but I think the experience I gained and going through all the trials and tribulations of being an NFL quarterback have benefited me.”
Also on Wednesday, Bengals linebacker Vincent Rey signed the one-year tender the club had offered him in March as an exclusive-rights free agent.
A third-year player out of Duke, Rey registered 18 tackles and a sack last season while ranking third on the team with 12 special teams tackles. Undrafted out of college, Rey has played in every game the last two seasons.