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Kendric Pryor just continues to impress

Former Wisconsin receiver passes first test

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NFL: Arizona Cardinals at Cincinnati Bengals
Kendric Pryor
Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Don’t look too hard for information on Cincinnati Bengals’ undrafted free agent pickup Kendric Pryor. Because you are not going to find much.

In fact, there is not even a Wikipedia entry on the former University of Wisconsin wideout.

But maybe that’s a good thing. Pryor, at 5-foot-11 and 189 pounds, is pretty good at flying under the radar — flying, as in a 4.37 second 40-yard dash time. Not to mention a 69-inch box jump.

And, if there was any question about Pryor’s abilities, Friday’s night’s preseason opener against the Arizona Cardinals should have answered them once and for all.

“He started slow in OTAs in the spring, just trying to get his footing, but he’s really made a lot of plays this summer,” said Bengals’ wide receivers coach Troy Walters. “So I want to see it transfer to a real game situation against different defenders.”

Pryor got the evening started with a 22-yard toe-tapping reception from quarterback Jake Browning to open the second quarter. Then, at the beginning of the third quarter, Pryor went over the middle and into triple coverage to snatch an 11-yard dart from Browning. But the best was yet to come.

With just over three minutes left to play, Pryor ran a go route down the right sideline as quarterback Drew Plitt lofted a pass that seemed destined to float harmlessly out of bounds. Instead, Pryor stretched his left arm out and made a ridiculous one-handed catch that resulted in a gain of 28 yards. Less than two minutes later, Pryor streaked past his defender and made an easy over-the-shoulder grab for the Bengals’ second touchdown of the day.

Pryor finished the day as Cincinnati’s leading receiver with 89 yards on four receptions and a touchdown. And he continued a camp that has seen him catch just about everything thrown in his direction.

“Whenever my number’s called, just take advantage of the opportunity,” Pryor said after the game. “Just keep doing my job. Just keep working, keep working and every time I get in just try to show them something. Today, just going out there and showing what I can do.”

Clearly, the Bengals saw something in Pryor that few other teams did. His results at Wisconsin were hardly overwhelming as he finished with 99 receptions for 1,265 yards and seven touchdowns through his five-year career. As a senior, he caught just 32 passes for 416 yards and three touchdowns.

“I know like the type of player I am,” Pryor said. “Numbers may not have shown that in college but just getting that opportunity now, and I made it to where I want to be, just continue to show that I can make those plays at the highest level. If they keep calling my number, I keep making plays.”

And Friday night, the rest of the football universe got a look at just what kind of an athlete and receiver Pryor truly can be.