As the Cincinnati Bengals are getting re-acclimated with each other, their newest players are also re-introducing themselves to the media.
Vonn Bell, the former Ohio State Buckeye, doesn’t need much of an introduction around here.
As Bell ended his college career, Bengals edge defender Sam Hubbard was just entering the ranks of the Buckeyes defense. The two played just one season together in Columbus since Hubbard was redshirted for his freshman year, but Bell told members of the media this week that his connection with Hubbard was one of the reasons he chose the Bengals in free agency this offseason.
“I just knew a couple of guys on defense. We just did our research. My agency. We just went down the whole 32 teams,” Bell explained. “I was reaching out to guys like Sam [Hubbard] and Buckeyes we knew and he was like, ‘You need to come here.’ Guys were reaching out around the league and I was like, man, I’m not on a team and it felt different. I feel like God made a new opportunity and a new chapter in my life and I’m glad to be here.”
Bell didn’t agree to terms with Cincinnati until a week after the new league year had begun; over a week after free agency fundamentally begins. But his wait looks to be well worth it.
He’s one of five former Buckeyes on the active roster, the most notable one being Joe Burrow, who joined the Buckeyes during Bell’s final year at OSU. Bell also spoke on practicing with the No. 1 overall pick for the first time in half a decade.
“He still has that Joe swagger. He’s just got to be himself every day. That’s all you need,” Bell said. “That’s good enough. Just challenge himself every day, just getting better, just finding that one percent of getting better. It’s going to be alright.”
Bell brings big-game experience and positional versatility to a roster that features familiar faces all over the field. Kudos to Hubbard for helping making this connection possible.