On the surface, this might not seem like much. After all, Hubert is a seventh-round pick who many thought would be fighting for a spot on the final roster. Why would the Bengals miss that kind of production?
Well, if you’ve been reading my articles since after the draft, you’ll know that I was quite high on Hubert and was thrilled that Cincinnati got him in the final round. This guy could have really surprised and helped improve a Bengals pass rush that was atrocious a season ago.
Hubert was a star during his college career at Kansas State and was a sack artist while in Manhattan, especially in his final two years. During the 2020 season, Hubert totaled 8.5 sacks in 10 games and the year prior had seven sacks through 12 games. He was the bright spot on that K-State defense and always had a shot to make a big play.
The Cincinnati Bengals will miss Wyatt Hubert in 2021.
Maybe it seems silly to be upset over a seventh-round pick missing the season but Hubert truly could have made things interesting. The Bengals drafted four defensive linemen and Hubert was the fourth and final one to join that group but that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t have been able to prove himself.
Now we’ll never know what kind of rookie season Hubert could have had and what kind of impact he’d have made on the roster, which is a damn shame. Maybe he wouldn’t have seen the field much or maybe, just maybe, he’d have been a game-changing late-round pick that many would have wondered how he was still available so late in the draft.
This is an unfortunate situation but the Bengals weren’t planning on pushing Hubert into a starting role. They have Sam Hubbard, Trey Hendrickson, Larry Ogunjobi, D.J. Reader, Joseph Ossai, Cameron Sample, and Tyler Shelvin of those who have starter potential so this isn’t the nail in the defense’s coffin by any means.
Wyatt Hubert won’t take the field this year but that just means that 2022 will be his redemption tour and Bengals fans look forward to seeing him play in the future. Hopefully, he has a speedy recovery and we can see him in action next year.