As first noted recently by FOXSports.com, Canadian Football League DE Phillip Hunt has been receiving interest from many NFL teams for his services. The Minnesota Vikings were previously identified as one of the interested teams. A source indicated the Houston Texans are also interested in the CFL pass rusher.
Hunt, who worked out for the Texans on Dec. 28, also worked out for the Cleveland Browns (Dec. 16), Vikings (Dec. 18), New England Patriots (Dec. 20) and Philadelphia Eagles (Dec. 14). The Vikings also recently worked out six other CFL players and signed former CFL WR Emmanuel Arceneaux to a three-year deal.
CFL players were prohibited, by rule, from signing with NFL teams until Jan. 3, which is when the NFL regular season ended. The window to sign CFL players expires on Feb. 15. The CFL free agency period starts the next day. Hunt’s option on his contract picks up on Feb. 15, so he must sign with an NFL team by that date or he’ll be back in the CFL for another season.
Hunt, who posted 19 sacks over the past two seasons with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, went unselected in the 2009 NFL Draft. He signed with the Browns a few days after the draft but was waived during the preseason. He signed with the Blue Bombers in September of that year. He was the CFL’s top pass rusher this past season with 16 sacks.
The Texans are shifting to a 3-4 defensive scheme this coming season. Although Hunt played with his hand down in Winnipeg’s 4-3 defensive scheme, he did have limited experience in the 3-4 during his time with the Browns.
A pro personnel source told FOXSports.com that Hunt would fit in as a situational pass rusher in the NFL for about 10-20 plays per game.
The defensive lineman out of the University of Houston is the latest sack artist to come out of the league north of the border.
Miami Dolphins second-year OLB Cameron Wake was a former two-time CFL player of the year. He finished third in the NFL during the 2010 season with 14 sacks and was selected to the Pro Bowl.