Rookie Jeffrey Gunter Shining & Standing Out in Bengals Training Camp

Rookie Jeffrey Gunter Shining & Standing Out in Bengals Training Camp

Willie Lutz
2 years ago
2 min read
defensive lineman Jeffrey Gunter goes through drills during the 2022 NFL Scouting Combine

Training camp has been kind to Cincinnati Bengals rookie and 2022 seventh-round pick Jeffrey Gunter. Despite entering camp with a lower profile, he continues to flash and get to the quarterback, even against some first-string competition. 

In their second padded practice of the summer, Gunter was simply crushing offensive linemen. In multiple clips shared by local media, it was clear that the rookie edge rusher was getting the better of his competition. 

As for Gunter himself, the camp experience seems to be one dream of a learning opportunity. So far, the rookie seems to be absorbing what he sees from established starters along the defensive line. 

“I ain’t hit nobody since my bowl game, so I was excited,” Gunter told Jay Morrison of The Athletic after Thursday’s multi-sack performance. “Today was a good day. I learned a lot of stuff, and I think I made some plays. And watching Trey [Hendrickson] and Sam [Hubbard]? Man, those are some of the best football players in the world. Just having both of them here at the same time, learning from each, I’m a kid in a candy shop. I’m just soaking it up.”

However, Gunter isn’t alone in his excitement for his peers. Teammates have taken the time to call out the 23-year-old rookie out of Coastal Carolina for his impressive performance so far in training camp


It doesn’t hurt that Gunter is getting praise from some key team members. Defensive cornerstone and nose tackle, DJ Reader, said, “We've got a lot of young guys in our room and it gives you a lot of energy. Zach [Carter]'s having a good camp. Jeff [Gunter]'s having a good camp. [Tariqious] Tisdale, all those boys are having a good camp. They're eager to learn.” 

Perhaps the Bengals found a steal with their seventh-round pick (the 252nd of 262 picks in the 2022 NFL Draft). Obviously, there’s plenty for Gunter still to prove in the training camp process, plus he’ll need to make a little noise in their upcoming trio of preseason games.

However, it’s not as if Gunter entered the draft without a good production profile. Gunter posted 17 sacks and 38.5 tackles for loss at Coast Carolina. Further, he posted 5.5 sacks and 8.5 tackles for loss as a senior in 2021. Gunter also earned a 75.3 PFF pass-rush grade last season, which ranked 60th among 825 graded players at the college level. 

While he’ll have to do more than wow his coaches in training camp, Gunter is at least on the way toward earning a roster spot. However, if his production continues to shine prior to the start of the regular season, he may find himself as a fixture in the Bengals' already potent pass rush rotation.

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