Vontaze Burfict: Humble and Rising Star

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Nov 17, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals outside linebacker Vontaze Burfict (55) reacts during the game against the Cleveland Browns at Paul Brown Stadium. Cincinnati won 41-20. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

It’s scary to think about where the Cincinnati Bengals defense would be without linebacker Vontaze Burfict. They’ve gotten a large boost this year from an unexpected source, as the once undrafted Burfict has provided the defense with some huge plays while leading the team in tackles.

In fact, he has led the team in 13 of their 14 games played, including nine games with 10 tackles or more. He leads all the NFL with 151 total combined tackles.

In just his second year in the NFL, the Arizona State product has not only increased his production in tackles, but has also chipped-in eight pass deflections, a sack on the illusive Tom Brady and forced a fumble in the home win against Cleveland that he returned for a touchdown.

Not bad for a player who went undrafted and had to earn his spot the honest way.