Vonn Bell is leaving Cincinnati for Carolina.
The former Ohio State safety agreed to a deal with the Carolina Panthers on Monday, according to multiple reports.
Per Ari Meirov of The 33rd Team, Bell’s contract with the Panthers is a three-year deal worth $22.5 million with $13 million guaranteed.
Bell returns to the NFC South, where he started his career with the New Orleans Saints, after a prolific three-year run with the Cincinnati Bengals in which he was a three-time team captain. Bell started 48 regular-season games for the Bengals over the last three seasons and recorded 288 total tackles with five interceptions, eight forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries. He helped lead the Bengals to an AFC championship in 2021 and back-to-back AFC North titles in 2021 and 2022.
The Bengals were expected to prioritize re-signing Bell with the likely impending departure of fellow starting safety Jessie Bates, but it appears they were ultimately outbid by the Panthers, who add a veteran leader to their secondary.
Bell joins former Ohio State teammate Pat Elflein on the Panthers’ roster. He may not be the only Buckeye to join the Panthers this offseason after they traded up for the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, which they could use to select former Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud.