Bengals Banter: Talking Vontaze Burfict, & the Kicker Conundrum

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Oct 14, 2012; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals outside linebacker Vontaze Burfict (55) before the game against the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The annual NFL Scouting Combine is this week, and while it can be a tremendous benefit to prospects if they are able to perform well this week, a bad showing is by no means a career-killer. Just ask Vontaze Burfict, who had one of the worst combine performances ever seen, but as the NFL Network’s Mike Mayock points out, the Bengals did their homework, and still felt Tez was worth a roster spot:

"All of a sudden a guy runs slower than you expect, faster than you expect. You’ve got to go back and watch his tape. You’ve got to give Cincinnati credit. Especially on the Burfict kid because the kid’s tape was bad and his combine was bad. But the Bengals … you’ve got to give them credit. … They went beyond the surface and they understood there was a good football player underneath all that and were willing to invest time in a free agent, which a head coach will hardly ever do. They did their homework, they got the kid in shape, and he turned into a tackling machine this year."