Saturday, July 05, 2014

An Under-the-Radar Opposing Player to Keep an Eye On

Margus Hunt
As a rookie last season, defensive end Margus Hunt did little for the Cincinnati Bengals. The 2013 second-round draft choice out of SMU was always pegged as a bit of "project" because he was a native of Estonia who played little football until going to SMU.

At 6'8", however, and 277 pounds at the NFL Combine, Hunt possessed what some called freakish athleticism first as a member of Estonia's national track and field team and then as a novice defensive end at SMU, where he blocked an NCAA-record 17 kicks (PATs and field goal attempts). His rookie season in the NFL was basically a red-shirt campaign spent learning some of the intricacies of playing defensive end in the NFL.

Reports out of Cincinnati indicate that Hunt spent the off-season working out. He's up to 291 pounds, which sounds a lot like Aaron Smith territory, although Hunt would have a long, long way to go before he earns the right to be compared in any way (other than size) to Aaron Smith.

Back in February 2013, Joey Porter's Pit Bulls suggested a scenario whereby the Steelers might draft Hunt and convert him to inside linebacker, which of course never happened.  He's with the Bengals now, and we just think he might be an interesting player to watch. 

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