Takkarist McKinley is on to Cincinnati.
The defensive end and former first-round pick of the Atlanta Falcons has been claimed by the Bengals via waivers, the team announced Wednesday. McKinley was waived by the Falcons earlier this week after three and a half seasons with the team.
Cincinnati wasn't the only interested party, as NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported the Cleveland Browns, Las Vegas Raiders and San Francisco 49ers also put in claims.
McKinley made it very publicly clear he wanted out of Atlanta in recent weeks, going as far as tweeting clown emojis at those running the Falcons while still a member of the team. Interim coach Raheem Morris promised McKinley would "be held accountable" before the team waived him days later. Upon his departure, however, McKinley was thankful on Twitter.
Oddly enough, McKinley is joining a team that just traded away its own disgruntled edge rusher who had made his feelings known via Twitter, as well. McKinley, when healthy, could account for some snaps left behind by the departure of Carlos Dunlap, whom Cincinnati sent to the Seattle Seahawks in a trade just before the deadline.
McKinley hasn't been effective enough to be considered worth the first-round pick spent on him in 2017. He saw a bit of a boost last season, but has appeared in just four games in 2020. McKinley said it best with his tweet: "I only have 17.5 sacks."
We'll see if he can salvage 2020 before reaching free agency in the spring.