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Sixth Round: Bengals Opt for Versatile Tackle

Hakeem Adeniji (78) played both tackles at Kansas.
Hakeem Adeniji (78) played both tackles at Kansas.

One of the reasons the Bengals passed on some big people early in the draft is they thought they thought they could get better value late and they emerged with the extremely experienced Hakeem Adeniji, a four-year starting tackle out of Kansas.

The 6-4, 302-pound Adeniji is another team captain that the Bengals seem to have on speed dial in this draft. After watching him play for the North at the Senior Bowl, they became interested and by the end of it he had higher than a sixth-round grade.

Offensive coordinator Brian Callahan says he projects to playing tackle and maybe some guard in the NFL. They were impressed how he moved into guard in Mobile after tying a school record with 48 starts at both tackles in Lawrence. The last time he had worked inside came in high school.

"He didn't say a word and he did well," Callahan said. "He's very athletic. He gets to the second level."

But what really impressed them was Adeniji's intelligence. He was accepted at the Air Force Academy before going to Kansas and he showed some quick acumen in the Senior Bowl.

"He's not a big guy, but he's physical and can move," Callahan said. "We'd like to think with his intelligence and experience he can move some competition."

His brother, Moshood, played offensive line at the Air Force Academy and is stationed in Florida. His mother Semia was a TV anchor in Nigeria before the family settled in the Dallas area, where he played football and basketball and ran track at Garland High School.

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