Three Ohio State Buckeyes are getting their first taste of on-field NFL action this weekend in Cincinnati.
Billy Price, Sam Hubbard and Chris Worley find themselves back on the same field but facing fairly different situations.
As the No. 1 pick in the 2018 Cincinnati draft class, Price said he feels an obligation to be a leader.
The center also plans to take charge on the offensive line, but he sounded like he knows he probably will have to pay some dues before that’s going to happen for a rookie.
“You’ve got to know your job, you’ve got to know your technique every time and be confident in yourself and bring that swagger,” he said. “I’ve got a lot of work to do so I ain’t got the swagger right now to what they want, but you know what? In two weeks, three weeks, when I’ve got that stuff under my belt I’ll be ready to go.”
There’s also that little matter of health: While he is able to do walk-throughs, Price cannot be part of activities that might cause him to aggravate a pec injury that had to be surgically repaired.
“I’m excited to be here, and I’ll be even more excited once I’m cleared and able to go against these guys, but you’ve got to walk before you run,” Price said.
Hubbard was taken with the 77th pick in the draft, and he figures to be playing on the edge of the line rather than in the middle of everything like Price.
Pass rusher is a premium position in the NFL, and no team can ever have too many players who can get to the quarterback.
The Cincinnati native just has to concentrate on learning his position — hopefully without too much distraction.
“I’m just trying to put my phone away for camp and focus 100 percent on football right now,” he said with a laugh. “I’ll talk to my family after I’m done with camp.”
Then there’s Worley, an undrafted free agent who hopes to make the team in, well, any capacity the Bengals will have him.
“My niche better be whatever they need you to be!” he said with some enthusiasm.
Recruited as an “athlete” from Cleveland Glenville five years ago, Worley ended up playing 50 games at Ohio State and logging 154 tackles, 11 for loss.
He played all three linebacker positions and hopes that versatility will help him find a spot in Cincinnati.
“Every player has that dream to become an NFL starter on defense, but I’m just here to make an impact whatever way I can regardless of what they ask me to do.”