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Past and present Bengals among most hated NFL players

Haters gonna hate, though I'm sure that Vontaze Burfict will shake this off.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

When it comes to the Cincinnati Bengals, the team is still viewed as one of the more rebellious teams in league circles and in the national media.

Though they've cleaned up their act and gotten rid of players with lots of off-field issues, they still have some guys who walk a fine line between clean and dirty, none of which is more true than for Vontaze Burfict.

The Sporting News compiled a list of the 40 most hated players of all time, and Tez comes in at No. 28.

28. Vontaze Burfict

Burfict haters came into focus when Steelers players accused him of celebrating Le'Veon Bell's season-ending injury in 2015. From there, Burfict's beef with Pittsburgh continued, and a personal foul for a hit on Antonio Brown led to a three-game suspension for Burfict heading into 2016.

He has developed a reputation because of too many personal fouls, which takes away from his tremendous talent on the field.

Heck, Burfict probably likes being mentioned among the NFL's most hated players of all time. It means he's doing something right when you look at the others on this list, which includes some all-time greats and future Hall-of-Famers.

There were only three Bengals to make this list, and only two are current players. However, former Bengals star receiver Chad Johnson made the list thanks to his outgoing attitude that rubbed a lot of people the wrong way during his heyday.

23. Chad Johnson (Ochocinco)

Ochocinco isn’t for the "act like you’ve been there" crowd. What was your favorite — or least favorite — Ochocinco touchdown celebration? He enraged some by putting a fake Hall of Fame jacket on after one of those scores.

Johnson became more a side show in his later careers, and he’s faced legal issues since his final season with the Patriots in 2011.

The highest Bengal to make the list is current cornerback Adam Jones, who makes this list based more on his prior troubles as 'Pacman,' most of which occurred during his days with the Titans and Cowboys, though he's had a few knocks on his record in the Queen City.

9. Adam "Pacman" Jones

Jones was involved in numerous off-field incidents early in his career, and he was suspended for the 2007 season as a result. Jones re-invented his career in Dallas and Cincinnati, but he still finds his way into the headlines. He drew a $35,000 fine for slamming Amari Cooper’s head into the turf last season and had a costly personal foul (and an even bigger reaction on Instagram) after the Bengals’ wild-card loss against Pittsburgh.

Some guys who spent a year with the Bengals that are on this list include Terrell Owens and James Harrison, but almost all of their dirty deeds came with other teams.

In all, you can debate the order in which these players should be ranked, but I've got no problem with anyone on this list, Bengals included. Sometimes it's good to be hated because it typically means you're really good at what you do, even if it does come with a 'questionable' attitude.

Also, it's good to see Ben Roethlisberger ranked at No. 8 and higher than any Bengals. That's all I'll say on that.