ICYMI: Cincinnati Bengals: Analysing the USC Busts

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Oct 9, 2011; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Frostee Rucker (92) sits on the bench during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Fernando Medina-USA TODAY Sports

There was defensive end Frostee Rucker as well. He makes this list because he was with the Bengals for a few years, but frankly, didn’t do much. He was placed on the injured reserve list his rookie year in 2006, and would account for a mere 7 sacks over the next 5 seasons. After a subpar year with the Cleveland Browns, he finds himself without a job.

Dec 13, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Rey Maualuga (58) prior to playing the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Bengals defeated the Eagles 34-13. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports


And then we find ourselves left with the infamous pair of linebackers. Keith Rivers, and Rey Maualuga. Rivers was one of the more highly recruited players that year from USC, but never amounted to anything on the Bengals while he was here, and is now hanging on for dear life to a job with the New York Giants.

In the lead up to the 2009 NFL Draft, Maualuga was ranked as one of the top middle linebackers entering the draft, and was picked in the second round by the Bengals. He finished his rookie season with 64 tackles, one sack, three forced fumbles and three pass deflections in 15 games started before being placed on injured reserve due to a broken ankle in Week 15. Since then, his play has continued to regress to the point he was rated among the league’s worst linebackers in 2012.

He’s been a negative distraction off the field as well. Maualuga was arrested on January 29, 2010, on charges of drunken driving and careless driving in Covington, Kentucky.

In 2012, Maualuga punched the manager of a bar in downtown Cincinnati after a dispute, and was later charged with assault.

Unfortunately, Maualuga still on the team. And as he continues his tenure as the Bengals middle linebacker, we will be forced to watch a man that can’t tackle well, can’t pursue the run, and can’t defend the pass, be the one to lead the Bengals defense.


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