Vincent Rey ran with first-team linebackers

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Take everything with a grain of salt that happens in OTAs, but something interesting that happened in Bengals OTAs came at linebacker.

While both Rey Maualuga and Vincent Rey were represent and on the field, it was Vinnie who was getting the first-team reps at middle linebacker.

As Coley Harvey of ESPN put it though, it was more experimenting with different lineups than determining who will be starting when the regular season opens.

As far as opening up competition, yes, every position is open right now. Coach Marvin Lewis has his assistants working backups in with the first team and first-teamers mixing in with second-teamers, too, during these voluntary organized team activities. Rey, who had a banner 2013 season, will get his opportunities to unseat Maualuga, and the same with Still or any other backup defensive tackle when it comes to (Domata) Peko.

Coming into 2013, Vinnie had started in just one game in his four years in the NFL, and that was at weakside linebacker. After Rey Maualuga was knocked out of action due to a sprained MCL, it was Vinnie who was thrust into the starting lineup at MLB.

According to Pro Football Focus, Vinny had a +6.3 grade for the year, which made him the 9th-best MLB in the league that played in at least 25 percent of his teams snaps.

He would end up starting three games in 2013 with 32 tackles, three sacks and an interception in those games.

It was a small sample of Vinnie's ability to be a quality MLB, but it was clear he deserved to play significant snaps. Maualuga still ended up getting his starting spot back once he returned in Week 13, and Vinnie would average just 15.3 snaps per game over the final six games of the year.

With a LB rotation of Vinnie, Maualuga, Emmanuel LamurSean Porter, Jayson DiManche, Marquise Flowers and Vontaze Burfict, the Bengals certainly have the depth.

Now, it's just a matter of finding ways to use all of those guys effectively.

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