Wednesday, September 05, 2001

Bengals sign former Bearcat Monds

By Mark Curnutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        The Bengals on Tuesday terminated the contract of defensive tackle Tom Barndt and signed former University of Cincinnati star Mario Monds, a rookie defensive tackle who had been waived by the Washington Redskins.

        Monds was the Redskins' sixth-round draft choice after making 25 tackles for the Bearcats last season. He was second-team all-Conference USA. He also had 4.5 sacks and 12 tackles for loss.

        Monds is 6 feet 3, 325 pounds. He had six tackles in preseason action, including five against New England in Washington's final game.

        Barndt, who was charged with a DUI last week in Covington, was signed as an unrestricted free agent before the 2000 season from Kansas City. The Bengals gave him a $3.3 million signing bonus, and Barndt was scheduled to make $1.2 million this season as a backup to starting tackles Oliver Gibson and Tony Williams.

        Monds will make $209,000 this year. But the team will save about half of Barndt's salary this season, because $660,000 of the contract counts against its salary cap. The Bengals will absorb the remainder of the signing bonus in next year's cap (about $2 million).

        TRYOUT: Former Bengals punter Daniel Pope worked out Tuesday morning for New England in Foxboro, Mass.

        For the time being, the Pats are sticking with another former Bengals punter, Lee Johnson.

        “But they said they're concerned with their situation,” Pope said from Boston's Logan Airport. “They said if they made a change, they'd give me a call.”

        Pope was released Sunday by the Bengals after punting a franchise-record 94 times without a single blocked punt in 2000. He also was the team's holder for kicker Neil Rackers.

        LOCAL HERO: Former Mariemont High School and Miami University star Alex Sulfsted was signed as the fifth member of the Bengals' practice squad.

        A guard, Sulfsted was the sixth-round draft pick of the Kansas City Chiefs.

        Sulfsted, who's 6-3, 312 pounds, played left tackle at Miami, where he blocked for touchdown record-setter Travis Prentice. Sulfsted was moved inside in the pros. He was second-team all-Mid-American Conference as a senior.

        SPIKES BACK: Outside linebacker Takeo Spikes is expected to return to practice today after missing Sunday and Monday workouts to be with his ailing father, Jimmie Spikes, in Sandersville, Ga. The elder Spikes has cancer.


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