With regards to the true rookies, undrafted Arkansas State Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Year, Brandon Joiner, seems to be a model Bengals already as he put on a different set of stripes earlier this week in preparation to begin serving a 3-year prison sentence for a 2007 armed robbery. The other three other undrafted rookies are each very intriguing in their own right, however. Emmanuel Lamur transitioned to linebacker during his junior season at Kansas State from strong safety where he led the defense the year prior with 68 tackles in 2009. After minor injuries limited him his junior year, Lamur exploded as a senior posting generating 83 tackles (six tackles for loss), seven passes broken up and two forced fumbles. As a slim 6’4” 232 lbs, Lamur could be an interesting defensive tool against pass heavy offenses where he could focus on slot receivers and mitten-handed tight-ends.
The second, Ohio-native Grant Hunter, is another linebacker by conversion. Butler University’s Defensive Linemen of the Year last fall, Hunter was a sack machine as a defensive end, recording 10 sacks and 15.5 tackles for loss. Regardless, as the Bengals typically keep only six or seven linebackers on their final roster, so Hunter could be a bit of a long shot.