Bengals sign 3rd-round picks Hubbard, Jefferson

Linebacker Malik Jefferson (46) was the Big 12 Conference Co-Defensive Player of the Year in 2017.Photo Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

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The Cincinnati Bengals signed rookie defensive end Sam Hubbard and linebacker Malik Jefferson, the team announced Thursday.

Hubbard and Jefferson, who were both third-round selections in the 2018 NFL Draft, signed four-year contracts with a fifth-year option. Cincinnati now has its 11-player draft class under contract.

The 6-foot-5, 270-pound Hubbard was taken at No. 77 overall, one slot ahead of Jefferson. Hubbard started 22 of 40 games in three seasons at Ohio State. He recorded 116 career tackles, including 29.5 for losses, and 17 sacks.

In 2017, Hubbard established career highs with 13.5 tackles for loss and 7.0 sacks.

Jefferson appeared in 34 games (30 starts) for Texas and amassed 223 tackles, including 25.5 for losses, and 12.0 sacks. He also had six pass breakups and two forced fumbles.

The Big 12 Conference Co-Defensive Player of the Year in 2017, the 6-2, 236-pound Jefferson led the Longhorns with 110 tackes in his final season. He was a semifinalist for the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker.