First-year player looks to land a spot in Bengals rotation at WR ... Spent time in 2011 preseason with San Diego before being waived, and was signed late in season to Bengals practice squad, where he closed the season and postseason.
CAREER TRANSACTIONS: Signed with San Diego as a college free agent on 7-27-11 ... Waived by Chargers on 8-31-11 ... Signed to Bengals practice squad on 12-27-11 ... Signed 1-9-12 to Bengals offseason roster.
PREVIOUS SEASONS: 2011 - Played in two Chargers preseason games (no statistics) ... Signed to Bengals practice squad after Game 15, where he spent the remainder of regular season and postseason.
COLLEGE: Began his college career at Southern California from 2006-08, totaling 57 catches for 586 yards and four TDs ... Transferred to University of Cincinnati and began play in 2010, but suffered knee injury in first game at UC, the 2010 season opener at Fresno State, causing him to miss remainder of season ... Majored in sociology at both USC and UC.
PERSONAL: Hometown is Staten Island, N.Y. ... Attended Moore Catholic High School ... Spent 2005-06 academic year at Hargrave Military Academy in Chatham, Va. ... Favorite hobby is bowling, and also enjoys music, video games and comedic movies ... First name is pronounced “vee-DAL” (second syllable rhymes with “pal”).NOTE ABOUT NFL EXPERIENCE: Hazelton did not earn an accrued year of experience toward NFL free agency in 2011 because he was not on a 53-player roster, a Reserve/Injured list or a Reserve/Physically Unable to Perform list for the required minimum of six games that year.
From virtually the minute last season ended Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson has been urging quarterback Andy Dalton to expand his role and on Tuesday as he watched Dalton prepare for the first voluntary practice of the spring he didn’t have to say a word. Literally.
This is why the Bengals signed veteran linebacker A.J. Hawk in free agency and why they drafted Texas Christian linebacker P.J. Dawson in the third round. Defensive coordinator Paul Guenther wants to be deep in practice as well as games.
The Bengals’ Mike Nugent is halfway to his goal of kicking 20 years in the NFL. Which means if he makes it, half his career will come dealing with extra points that weren’t as automatic as they were during his first 10 seasons.