EAST LANSING, Mich. -- From lowly two-star recruits in Michigan State's class of 2010 to AFC North rivals, Darqueze Dennard and Le'Veon Bell are soon to be reunited in different uniforms.
On Dec.7 in Cincinnati and Dec.28 in Pittsburgh, Dennard will be a rookie Bengals corner, likely to have some physical run-ins with Bell, the Steelers' second-year starting running back.
"It's pretty cool, you know?" Dennard said after Cincinnati took him with the No.24 pick in the first round Thursday. "When we first got in at Michigan State together, I had to tackle him pretty much, so it won't be anything new."
Bell and Dennard were two of the least-pursued, least-hyped and most-overlooked members of coach Mark Dantonio's 2010 class, but they were championship keys and they're now NFL headliners for the Spartans.
And before the Steelers took Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier at No.15, Bell was following along and hoping they'd be teammates again. He tweeted: "If Queze makes it to 15? �� still hopin he gets picked before for his sake, but man I would love to have him!"
When it didn't happen, Bell tweeted: "Queze is OFFICALLY gonna be the STEAL of this years draft now..."
The draft can also turn rivals into teammates. Dennard will be joining a secondary that includes former Michigan cornerback Leon Hall. They met when Dennard visited the Bengals before the draft.
"We joked around for a little minute because he went to the school down the road. Other than that he's a really good guy," Dennard told reporters. "He's a great player, very consistent. I think he goes a little underrated. I think he's one of the top corners in the league and I respect him a lot.
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