The Cincinnati Bengals will be expecting to get more contributions from outside linebacker Jayson DiManche in 2014 after a promising rookie campaign.
After going undrafted out of Southern Illinois, the Bengals signed him and brought him into training camp to compete against a host of linebackers that were either veterans playing under guaranteed contracts, or drafted players with more investment put into them.
Needless to say, the chances of Jayson being on the opening day roster were quite slim. But after season-ending injuries to Emmanuel Lamur and Sean Porter, DiManche was able to grab a roster spot after performing well in the preseason, and went on to be a solid special teams contributor.
But before his NFL and college career began, DiManche was a standout player at Hamilton High School in Mercer County, New Jersey. He was honored by his high school before Saturday's home basketball game against Nottingham, and that was just the beginning of what the school has in store for him:
Monday, DiManche is scheduled to go back to Wilson Elementary School and be "Principal for a Day," and Tuesday he is scheduled to talk to the Hamilton football team.
"It feels great to be back home and to see a lot of old friends," DiManche said. "I’m looking forward to seeing even more people at the game and at school."
DiManche is only the second Hamilton player to make it to the NFL, following Kevin
Johnson, who was the first pick of the second round of the 1999 draft and played for the Cleveland Browns, Jacksonville Jaguars, Baltimore Ravens and Detroit Lions in a nine-year career.