Two more Kentucky Wildcats could be on the verge of finding their NFL home.
The Cincinnati Bengals are bringing in safety Darius West and linebacker Jordan Jones for a tryout during this weekend’s rookie minicamp. Both players were not selected during the NFL Draft but are hoping to make it in the pros as undrafted free agents.
West is coming off a great senior season in which he recorded 86 total tackles. He also had a career-high three interceptions. His best game last year may have been his last against Penn State, where he recorded 10 total tackles and made some big ones down the stretch as the Cats were trying to close it out.
West also played a major role as a leader for this team. He was a senior, and alongside Mike Edwards, those two made sure the secondary was always in the right spot.
Even so, West is facing an uphill climb to make a Bengals team that’s already pretty set at safety. He could challenge Brandon Wilson for the fourth and final spot, assuming the Bengals keep just four safeties.
As for Jones, he’s been a force at linebacker for the last three seasons. He finished this past season with 68 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, four pass deflections, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
Jones’ best season at UK was actually as a sophomore in 2016, where he racked up 109 tackles, 15.5 tackles for loss and four sacks.
Unfortunately, injuries and off-field issues — including being ineligible to play in the Citrus Bowl — helped lead to Jones not hearing his name called in the draft.
But Jones could be landing in a great situation with the Bengals if they sign him to a contract. They have one of, if not the worst linebacker unit in the NFL, so he’ll have as good of a chance to make their 53-man roster as he can hope for.