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Bengals take a chance on DE Montgomery

Expected to add some depth to the defensive line in next month’s draft, the Cincinnati Bengals got a jump on the process Friday by signing free agent defensive end Sam Montgomery.

A third-round pick of Houston in 2013, Montgomery didn’t last half the season before the Texans waived him Oct. 22 for a violation of team rules. An report said Montgomery was released along with rookie teammate Cierre Wood and Willie Jefferson for smoking marijuana in the team hotel the night before a 17-16 loss at Kansas City.

Thought to be a first-round draft prospect coming out of LSU, where he had 19 sacks in 31 games and led the Tigers to the 2011 BCS National Championship game, the 6-foot-3, 262-pound Montgomery told reporters at the NFL Combine that he and teammate Barkevious Mingo had a bet about which player would be drafted higher.

The Browns used the sixth overall pick on Mingo, who had a strong rookie season with 29 tackles and five sacks, while Montgomery, who also admitted to taking plays off, slid all the way to the third round. He showed up to Texans camp out of shape, injured his ankle in the first practice and never played a snap for Houston.

The Oakland Raiders took a flyer by signing him to their practice squad in December, but he was placed on season-ending Injured Reserve two days later.

If Montgomery is able to make the Bengals roster, he would some depth to a defensive line that lost starting end Michael Johnson to Tampa Bay in free agency last month.

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