NFL roster cuts: Former 49ers slot receiver gets released by Bengals

Would the 49ers consider a reunion with now-released Trent Taylor?
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Trent Taylor
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Trent Taylor / Dylan Buell/GettyImages

Trent Taylor never quite hit the mark with the 49ers early in his career but did manage to help the Bengals a lot. But they're now letting him go.

There was plenty of hype surrounding wide receiver Trent Taylor after the San Francisco 49ers selected him in Round 5 of the 2017 NFL Draft out of Louisiana Tech.

After all, it was impossible not to compare him to the legendary slot receiver, Wes Welker, thinking the Niners had found one of many day-three hidden draft gems.

Well, it never quite turned out that way.

Taylor had an impressive rookie season, hauling in 43 catches for 430 yards and two touchdowns. But those still stand as career-highs, as injuries began to take their toll the following season.

San Francisco ultimately elected not to re-sign or extend Welker after his contract expired in 2020, and he subsequently joined the Cincinnati Bengals the following year to complement what was already a talented wide receiver room.

After two years in Cincy where he primarily served as a punt return specialist, Taylor will now be looking for a new home entering the 2023 season, according to a report from NFL Network's Ian Rapoport:

The 5-foot-8, 180-pound wideout turned 29 years old last April but still has that reputation of being an injury-prone player.

Will that cloud his chances to sign with a new team?

Should 49ers entertain a reunion with Trent Taylor?

Taylor wouldn't cost much on the free-agent market, and the Niners potentially have a need for a return specialist right now, particularly with wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud (wrist) likely to start the year on injured reserve until he recovers from surgery.

That said, San Francisco deployed rookie wideout Ronnie Bell in a return role for much of the preseason, and it's more likely he winds up securing a roster spot because of that ability instead of the 49ers going out on the free-agent market.

Read more: 49ers roster-cut tracker: Who's being waived, released (or even traded)?

Plus, with Taylor knowing that McCloud will soon return, probably the only way he'll return to the Niners is if there's either a good amount of guaranteed money and/or a bona fide role that'd last for the rest of the season.

Neither seem probable from San Francisco's vantage point, and that'd likely eliminate any chance of a reunion taking place.

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