Cincinnati Bengals waive OL Fred Johnson less than an hour after signing him

CINCINNATI -- Fred Johnson is back in free agency limbo.

Less than an hour after the Cincinnati Bengals announced the reserve offensive tackle had signed a one-year deal, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter that Johnson was waived.

The move, which became official Wednesday, is the latest for a franchise that has spent the early part of free agency retooling one of the NFL's worst offensive lines.

In the first seven days of free agency, Cincinnati added three starters: guard Alex Cappa, center Ted Karras and offensive tackle La'el Collins, who will be formally introduced in a news conference Wednesday.

With exactly three accrued seasons, Johnson was eligible to be a restricted free agent this offseason. According to Schefter, Johnson signed the tender that is worth a minimum of $2.4 million, per OverTheCap.com.

Because Johnson signed the tender, any team that claims him off waivers will then incur the cost of that tender against their respective salary cap. If he goes unclaimed, he will become an unrestricted free agent whom the Bengals and other teams can sign at a lower price.

Johnson entered the NFL in 2019 as an undrafted free agent. Since joining the Bengals in the middle of the 2019 season, he has appeared in 23 games and made eight starts.