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Assessing the value Bengals got in drafting Ohio State DE Sam Hubbard

This turned out to be the Bengals’ biggest steal of the 2018 NFL Draft.

NCAA Football: Cotton Bowl-Ohio State vs Southern California Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Bengals landed a big steal when they took Sam Hubbard in Round 3 of the 2018 NFL Draft.

Hubbard, who played collegiately with the Ohio State Buckeyes, was regarded as one of the top edge defenders in this year’s draft.

Weighing in at 6’5” and 265 pounds, Hubbard first gained a full-time starting role in 2016, when he registered racking up 46 tackles, eight tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks and two pass break-ups.

Last season, Hubbard recorded 42 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss, seven sacks, and two forced fumbles. He was someone draft experts loved going into the draft, so much that many websites had him projected as first or second-round prospect.

ESPN’s Todd McShay had Hubbard ranked 65th overall coming into the draft, while Mel Kiper ranked him 75th. ranked Hubbard 56th.

CBS Sports had him ranked 113th. The Cold Omaha Consensus Big Board, which factors in every major draft ranking, had Hubbard ranked as the 47th-best prospect in this draft.

Despite the absurdly-low ranking from CBS, Hubbard still ended up being a great value pick in Round 3. He actually wound up being better than second-round pick Jessie Bates, who was ranking 57th overall by Coldmaha.

Looking ahead, Hubbard will add depth and security behind Carlos Dunlap and Michael Johnson, both of whom hit free agency in 2019. He’s a little undersized to be a full-time defensive end right away in a 4-3 defense, but with a year in an NFL weight room and on-field experience, Hubbard could be ready for a starting role in 2019.