SANTA CLARA, CA - OCTOBER 06: Kevin Minter #51 of the Arizona Cardinals reacts after a play against the San Francisco 49ers during their NFL game at Levi's Stadium on October 6, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)



             The Bengals today signed unrestricted free agent LB Kevin Minter, who has started every game for Arizona the last two seasons and has finished second on the team in tackles each year. He signed a one-year contract.

            Minter (6-0, 246; Louisiana State) is a fifth-year NFL player. He was an Arizona second-round draft choice in 2013. He has played in 61 consecutive games (including postseason) and helped lead the Cardinals to the playoffs in both 2014 and ’15. He has 254 career tackles, with five sacks and 11 passes defensed.

            “Kevin is a very instinctive player with a great background,” said Bengals LBs coach Jim Haslett. “Smart guy, good guy. Good nose for the ball. He has three-down abilities and will help us in a lot of ways.”

            Minter had a career-best 3.5 sacks last season while totaling 95 tackles. He had nine tackles-for-loss and four passes defensed. In 2015, he had a career-best 110 tackles for an Arizona team that finished 13-3 and reached the NFC Championship game. He led the Cardinals in ’15 in postseason tackles-for-loss (four), with 15 total stops.

            “The Bengals have a very stout defense, but my goal is to come in and play every down,” Minter said. “I’m excited to be a part of it. The way the organization embraced me on my visit, it just feels right.”

The Minter File

Minter is 26-years old. He visited the Bengals earlier in the week.

He's a 2013 second-round draft out of LSU. 

He played 61 games, with 37 starts in his four NFL seasons with Arizona.

Minter racked up 223 total tackles, five sacks, four pass breakups and a forced fumble in Arizona.

Minter started all 32 games as an inside linebacker the last two years with Arizona.

He is know as a punishing tackler, recording 81 tackles last season and a career-high 3.5 sacks.

Minter was ranked 25th among linebackers in 2016, according to Pro Football Focus.

The Cardinals replaced Minter with the signing of Karlos Dansby last week.

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 01: LInebacker Kevin Minter #51 of the Arizona Cardinals tackles tight end Lance Kendricks #88 of the Los Angeles Rams in the third quarter at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on January 1, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. The Cardinals won 44-6. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)