clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

The history behind 21; Darqueze Dennard hopes to make his own

New, comments

There isn't much history behind the number 21 for Bengals defensive backs, but Darqueze Dennard hopes to make some of his own.

USA TODAY Sports

Not long after Bengals made Darqueze Dennard the 24th-overall pick of the 2014 NFL Draft, he was assigned the roster number of 21.

Looking through the history books, one finds Bengals who've dawned No. 21 haven been mostly backups or journeyman passing through the Queen City.

NAME...........................YEARS

Paul Dunn ....................... 1970

Melvin Morgan ................ 1976-78

Jim Browner ................... 1979-80

Oliver Davis .................... 1981-82

James Brooks ................. 1984-91

Ryan Benjamin ............... 1993

Eric Bieniemy ................. 1995-98

Rico Clark ....................... 1999 (Games 1-14)

Tom Carter ..................... 1999 (Games 15-16), 2000-01

Jeff Burris ....................... 2002-03

Rashad Bauman ............. 2004-06

Simeon Castille............... 2008

Brandon Ghee ................ 2010-12

Former running back James Brooks had an outstanding career on the offensive side of the ball on his way to over 10,00 yards from scrimmage and four Pro Bowl berths.

On defense however, no one has ever held that jersey number and gone on to make a significant impact in Bengals stripes. Most of them were backups, like Brandon Ghee and Rashad Bauman, who had brief careers in Cincinnati.

But none of them had the expectations of  first-round pick. Ironically, Dennard probably won't either, at least as a rookie. Playing behind the likes of Hall, Jones, Newman and Kirkpatrick means the former Michigan State Spartan probably isn't starting as a rookie.

That's not stopping him from dreaming big though. His favorite NFL player who he tries to emulate:

"I'd probably say Darrelle Revis. We have the same body type. He's a press corner, and that's what I did in college. He's very (good) with his technique, and he comes up with tackles as well."

With that kind of attitude, the No. 21 will someday be one future Bengals defenders wear like a badge of honor.