Bengals Claim Gary Russell

Zane DanielsCorrespondent IApril 17, 2009

After being put on waivers earlier this week by the Steelers, Gary Russell was snatched up by the Bengals.

Russell was a backup running back for the Steelers last season, but with a healthy Rashard Mendenhall in camp, there was little need for Russell's services.

Last season, he served as the primary kick returner for Pittsburgh with 22.3 yards per return. The Bengals lost their first option at kick returner, Glenn Holt, to the Minnesota Vikings early in the free agency period.

The 5'11", 215-pound Russell played at Minnesota, sharing a backfield with Marion Barber and Laurence Maroney before he flunked out of school. (D'oh!)

The move further clarifies the areas the Bengals will be addressing in the draft next week. The need for a capable back to spell starter Cedric Benson has been eased by the acquisition of Russell.

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