If you had hoped/expected the Bengals to trade Chad Johnson in favor for a Saturday draft pick, then you might be disappointed. Not because his value for a first round pick is far fetched, or because his trade value generally took a hit. Rather Marvin Lewis said it's not so, writes Geoff Hobson.
Lewis also said that he expects Ocho Cinco to be with the team despite a hot stove full of reports the Bengals are going to trade him.
Ocho Cinco comes off his least productive and most injured season since he was a rookie in 2001. It began with arthroscopic ankle surgery that took him out of the first week of training camp and continued with a separated shoulder two weeks later that he played with the entire season.
Although The Ocho said late in January that he would report whenever the Bengals wanted him, Lewis wouldn't speculate if he'll be here March 30. But after Ocho Cinco failed to engineer a trade by missing all of last year's voluntary work in bombastic fashion, Lewis has noticed the silence.
"Chad's been taking care of Chad, which is a good thing," he said of The Ocho's placid offseason. "Chad is disappointed with his season a year ago and there are a lot of reasons that led to that. He wants to do everything in his power to rectify it. One of the steps in his power, wherever it is for him (to train), is to get in the best shape he can be in for this upcoming season.
"He had to overcome a lot of things last year. His injuries and our offense. Both sides have to do a better job.
Whether or not you can take Lewis' words at face value is another matter. Whereas he's quick to keep the conservative, coach-speak approach, like any other coach, to make sure that he and the club have the upper-hand during possible negotiations, Lewis will keep the status quo in the lockerroom to keep someone like Chad Johnson passive.