Mohamed Sanu

Mohamed Sanu

refer to caption

Sanu with the Cincinnati Bengals in 2013
No. 12Atlanta Falcons
Position: Wide receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: (1989-08-23) August 23, 1989
Place of birth: Sayreville, New Jersey
Height: 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight: 210 lb (95 kg)
Career information
High school: Monmouth Junction (NJ) South Brunswick
College: Rutgers
NFL Draft: 2012 / Round: 3 / Pick: 83
Career history
Roster status: Active
Career NFL statistics as of Week 9, 2016
Receptions: 199
Receiving yards: 2,288
Receiving touchdowns: 14
Player stats at

Mohamed Sanu Sr. (born August 22, 1989) is an American football wide receiver for the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League (NFL). He was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft and played college football at Rutgers.

Early life

Originally from Sayreville, New Jersey, Sanu was born to a Muslim family and also lived in his parents' native Sierra Leone as a child.[1] Sanu returned to the United States and lived in Dayton, New Jersey, where he eventually starred at South Brunswick High School as a triple-option quarterback before enrolling at Rutgers University in 2009. In his final season at South Brunswick High School, Sanu led the Vikings to their first playoff berth in nearly 40 years, including three rushing touchdowns of at least 80 yards against Edison High School.[2] He was ruled ineligible to play during his senior year, due to exceeding NJSIAA's age restriction; he graduated high school six months early and enrolled at Rutgers University in January 2009.[3]

In track & field, Sanu was one of the state's top performers in the jumping events. At the 2008 NJSIAA Sectional Championships, he placed 2nd in the triple jump (14.08 m) and 3rd in the long jump (6.43 meters). He also competed as a sprinter, recording personal-best times of 6.94 seconds in the 55 metres and 24.28 seconds in the 200 meters at the 2008 Merli Invitational.[4] He is a fan of soccer, and supports West Ham United.

College career

As a true freshman, Sanu had 51 receptions for 639 yards and three touchdowns, and ran 62 times for 346 yards and five touchdowns out of the Wildcat formation. Sanu was the first-ever true freshman to start at wide receiver for Rutgers under coach Greg Schiano, and he won Most Valuable Player honors at the 2009 St. Petersburg Bowl. In 2010, Sanu was a consensus preseason All-Big East wide receiver. In 2011 against North Carolina he tied a Big East record with 13 receptions. The next week he broke his own record by catching 16 passes. In 2011, Sanu broke the Big East single-season reception record with 115 receptions for 1,206 yards, a record previously held by Larry Fitzgerald.

In his three seasons at Rutgers, Sanu caught 210 passes for 2,263 yards and 19 touchdowns, and gained 3,019 all-purpose yards. He also completed eight of 18 passes for 207 yards and four touchdowns.

Professional career

Mohamed Sanu in 2012

Cincinnati Bengals

Pre-draft measurables
Ht Wt 40-yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert Broad BP
6 ft 2 in 211 lb 4.54 s 1.59 s 2.62 s 4.21 s 6.88 s 36 in 10 ft 6 in 19 reps
All values from NFL Combine

During the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft, Sanu received a prank phone call from somebody pretending to be Cincinnati Bengals owner Mike Brown, informing him that the Bengals were going to use their 27th overall pick on him.[5] The following day, Sanu received a phone call from the real Mike Brown, who informed him they would be drafting him in the 3rd round with the 83rd overall pick.

On September 23, 2012, against the Washington Redskins, Sanu came in as the wildcat quarterback out of a shotgun formation for the Bengals on the first play from scrimmage of the game, and threw a 73-yard touchdown pass to A.J. Green, giving Sanu his first touchdown pass before his first NFL reception. The pass also gave Sanu a perfect 158.3 passer rating for the game. He was also the first Bengals wide receiver ever to throw a touchdown pass. Sanu had his first touchdown catch during Week 10 against the New York Giants. He finished the game with 4 receptions for 47 yards. On November 30, 2012, it was announced that Sanu had what is likely season ending surgery to repair a stress fracture.

Sanu played in all 16 games of the 2013 NFL season finishing with 47 receptions, 455 yards, and 2 touchdowns.[6][7]

In the 2014 NFL season, Sanu played a much bigger role in the Bengals offense due to injuries to receivers A. J. Green and Marvin Jones. He recorded two 100-yard games. In week 3, Sanu threw an 18-yard touchdown pass to his quarterback, Andy Dalton in a 33–7 victory over the Tennessee Titans. It was Sanu's fourth completion of his career on four passing attempts as well as being his second touchdown pass of his career.

Atlanta Falcons

On March 10, 2016, Sanu signed a five-year, $32.5 million contract with the Atlanta Falcons.[8]

Personal stock offering

It was reported that Sanu would offer stock tracking his future income via a venture with Fantex, Inc. as part of a new financial instrument being sold by Fantex. Sanu offered Fantex a 10% share of future earnings from his brand. Fantex securitized the contract and offered shares of a publicly traded tracking stock.[9]

In November 2014, the IPO was completed, in which 164,300 shares were sold, valued at $10 per share.[10]


  1. "Freshman Mohamed Sanu does a lot of everything for Rutgers Scarlet Knights - Tampa Bay Times". Retrieved June 11, 2012.
  2. Morrison, Jay. "Bio for Bengals’ third-round pick Mohamed Sanu", Dayton Daily News, April 27, 2012. Accessed March 29, 2013. "In his final season at South Brunswick, Sanu led the Vikings to their first playoff berth in nearly forty years, including three rushing touchdowns of at least 80 yards vs. Edison High School."
  3. Allinder, Jimmy. "Sanu leaving his mark on Rutgers football", Sentinel, October 13, 2010. Accessed March 29, 2013. "Sanu is hoping for more of the same success that enabled his high school team to finish 9-2 in 2008, his final season. Because he turned 19 in his senior year, the NJSIAA declared him ineligible to play that year."
  5. King, Peter (2012-04-27). "Dallas Cowboys surprise Morris Claiborne by trading up to pick him in NFL Draft". Retrieved 2012-06-11.
  6. Hanzus, Dan. "Mohamed Sanu's season could end with stress fracture",, December 1, 2012. Accessed March 29, 2012.
  7. Katzowitz, Josh. "Bengals Place WR Mohamed Sanu on IR", CBS Sports, December 4, 2012. Accessed March 29, 2013. "But late last week, Sanu suffered a stress fracture in his foot during practice. On Tuesday, the Bengals placed him on the IR list, ending his season."
  9. "Company selling stock in Mohamed Sanu for $10".
  10. "Stock In Bengals WR Mohamed Sanu Is On The Rise".

External links

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