The Bengals' rookie minicamp is underway and 10 undrafted players with local connections will be among the rookies showing off their skills for the Bengals in an effort to make the team. These players have not yet been signed, but will be given a chance to work with the team this weekend on a tryout basis in an effort to be signed. The Bengals did announce a list of 13 college free agents the team signed this morning.
Here are 10 of the players trying out for the Bengals with local/regional connections from high school and/or college:
- K Jonathan Brown played at Louisville.
The Bengals have two kickers currently on the roster, veteran Mike Nugent and Zach Hocker who played 8 games in 2015, two on the Rams and six on the Saints. He joined the Bengals this offseason. Brown will compete with Hocker to unseat Nugent or to make it onto the practice squad.
- OT Aaron Epps played at Louisville.
Epps was a part-time starter for Louisville the past two seasons and started five games in 2015. He's a former high school basketball player who's expected to need to bulk up to make an impact at the NFL level.
- S Eilar Hardy played at Bowling Green and is from Pickerington, Ohio.
The Bengals have signed Bowling Green quarterback Matt Johnson in undrafted free agency already this offseason, so Hardy will try to join his former teammate on the Bengals.
- FB/TE Keith Heitzman played at Ohio University and is from Hilliard, Ohio.
After spending four years at University of Michigan, Heitzman decided to transfer to Ohio University for his final year of college eligibility. At Michigan, he was a three-year letterman and appeared in 36 games (8 starts) as both a defensive lineman and tight end. In 2015 at OU he played tight end only, securing 22 receptions for 297 yards and 3 touchdowns.
- DE Tom Lally played at Mount Union University and is from Fairview Park, Ohio (Lakewood St. Edward High School.)
Lally was a team captain for the Mount Union Raiders and named D3football.com's 2015 National Defensive Player of the Year. He was also an AFCA All-American, D3football.com All America First Team and won a variety of other awards for his 82 tackle, 20 sacks, 26 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles in 2015. He set the single season sack record for the Raiders, record for sack yards with 133 and record to tackle for loss yards with 146. He sounds pretty impressive and it will be interesting to see how he does against NFL competition.
- DE Silverberry Mouhon played at the University of Cincinnati.
Mouhon, was a Second team All-American Athletic Conference selection in 2015, a team captain and named to the Lombardi Award Preseason Watch list. He played in all 12 games recording 38 tackles including 7.0 for a loss and 4.5 sacks. He also added five quarterback hurries. NFLDraftScout.com ranks him the 33rd best DE in this year's draft class. You can read more about him from our original report on his tryout, here.
- C Lucas Powell played at Ohio University.
Another Ohio University player, Powell was a three-year college starter. He worked in Orlando, training with Tom Shaw for about three months in preparation for Pro Day, according to HustleBelt.com. Powell also appeared Gruden's QB Camp, working with Jordan Goff, Carson Wentz, Cardale Jones and other rookie NFL quarterbacks. From his Hustle Belt Draft profile:
Powell has decent size for a center and with a breadth of experience, will likely make some team happy as a backup center. He'll probably find himself on a practice squad somewhere.
Sauder started 32 of 41 games throughout his four year career at Taylor. He had 200 solo tackles, 364 total tackles, 9 interceptions, 2 touchdowns and 3 sacks during that span
Quinn was a four year player at UK. In 2015, 19 tackles and 2 passes defensed. NFL Draft Scout ranked him as the 104th best cornerback in the 2016 Draft class.
Walker is the son of former Bengals linebacker Kevin Walker who was a 1988 third round draft pick by the team. Walker was rated by NFL Draft Scout as the 70th best inside linebacker in the 2016 Draft class. There's very minimal information about Walker's time at Indiana State that we could find.
This is not the full list of tryout players, just a look at the tryout players with local connections to Cincinnati.