Defensive end Carlos Dunlap set a career-high 9.5 quarterback sacks during his rookie campaign, rivaling this unknown kid named Ndamukong Suh for most sacks by a rookie. Despite failing to challenge his career-mark in sacks, Dunlap has made significant strides in becoming a better pass rusher -- sometimes a rush is better than a sack, forcing the quarterback to hasten his delivery or overthrow a receiver to the loving embrace of Dre Kirkpatrick.
In five seasons with the Bengals, Dunlap has generated 35.5 quarterback sacks, 10 forced fumbles, and reached a career-high in tackles (66) last season. There's only room for growth and it's clear he's grown -- especially as a run defender:
During Tuesday's media luncheon, Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis reiterated a logical belief that "Dunlap's emergence was overlooked" last season.
Marvin Lewis thought Carlos Dunlap's emergence was overlooked last year and he's made as many strides as anyone this offseason.— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) July 28, 2015
Lewis says emergence of Dunlap was overlooked last year and has continued it into this offseason— Geoff Hobson (@GeoffHobsonCin) July 28, 2015
Dunlap earned a five-year extension prior to the 2014 season, worth nearly $40 million with $11.7 million guaranteed. The Bengals will look to see his continued growth and improvement this year.