Earlier this week we had a round table that tackled the issue about asking which Bengals player we'd nominated for Most Valuable Player through seven games. During the same session we also wondered how Dan Skuta has done replacing Rey Maualuga and if Chris Johnson scares us. And since it's Friday and we're feeling especially goofy, we've included some outtakes between Jason and myself, which usually happens for no reason throughout the course of the day.
How do you guys feel Dan Skuta has performed in Rey Maualuga's absence in the past two weeks?
Cody Byers: I'd say he's done about as well as you could realistically hope. No he's not looked like an All-Pro, but I feel confident in his ability to start in a pinch. He's had good plays, and other plays that reminded me that he used to be a defensive lineman in college.
Jason Garrison: I would agree. I think against the Colts it was obvious that the Bengals were missing Maualuga but Skuta played better in Seattle. Brandon Johnson also looked good in Seattle but I'm still excited for Maualuga's return this weekend against the Titans.
Josh Kirkendall: I think he's been serviceable, but Brandon Johnson is really the one that's stepped up. He took part in all of the defensive snaps against the Seahawks last weekend.
Jason: Yeah, I was really happy when the Bengals were able to get a deal done with him in the offseason.
Josh: It only took Keith Rivers' reconstructed wrist and other injuries to get it done.
Cody: You had a young undrafted free agent player fill in Skuta to fill in for Rey. Four years ago this guy was a defensive tackle, for his first two seasons he was a Sam linebacker (and fullback), and now he's playing middle. He's rarely in only one position.
Josh: Very serviceable. But I'm not sure if it weren't for the injuries at linebacker during training camp and preseason, if he makes the squad. That being said you have to appreciate his ability to step up and step in when needed.
Cody: I'd have to say, Vincent Rey is gone before Skuta is. Skuta is too versatile.
Heading into the Bengals Week 9 matchup, the Titans have the worst rushing offense in the NFL and one of the worst total offenses. The Bengals still have a top-five defense but how much does Chris Johnson scare you?
Josh: A ton. I've got that sinking feeling that he could break out of his funk against the Bengals, but that's over 20 years of conditioning as a Bengals fan. I trust Zimmer to get them ready. Domata Peko is a force up the middle too; unless they find a way to move him, Johnson's lanes, like every running back we've faced (save for Willie McGahee), will be limited.
Cody: I have to agree that I have that part of me that can't help but think "The Bengals will be the team they/he turns it around on". But I do have confidence in what this defense can do. And with Rey possibly coming back, I feel even better.
Josh: Hopefully Maualuga does make his return, though it was him thats been promoting his return by the Titans, not the team. And how much do you trust a player returning from injury?
Outtakes between Jason and Josh that seemingly comes out of nowhere during a standard day.
Josh: Wow. SB Nation link on Drudge.
Jason: Nice. I hate NASCAR. It's boring as hell.
Jason: It's boring. Why sit and watch guys drive in circles all day? I think it's funny that they consider themselves athletes. I take it that you like NASCAR?
Josh: I respect it, yes. And these guys are in good physical shape. Unlike, you know, some offensive linemen. But I don't watch it with any regularity. I just like racin'. Though I think road courses are the worst brand of racing.
Jason: Good physical shape?
Jason: I've just never liked racing sports... those and soccer.
Josh: I hated soccer growing up, but I've watched it recently and I've largely come to respect it. There really isn't a sport I don't like though, besides those outdoor competitions (like fishing) and poker.
Jason: Yeah. I don't call tricking and killing a sport.
Josh: I just think it's more competitive recreation than sport. But people could argue for it being a sport. I don't really care either way. And seriously, ESPN? Filling your primetime with the World Series of Poker? How is that possibly worse than NASCAR?
Josh: I just contacted the NFL to tell them that they were wrong about something and they're like, you rule man for letting us know and I'm like, damn straight.
Jason: What were they wrong about?
Josh: Marvin Lewis being 2-6 during opening weekend. He's 3-5
Jason: I'm glad you dropped some knowledge on them
Josh: Like a ninja!
Josh: I put a compass on my droid, so now i know if I'm walking East.
Jason: Does that help you out a lot?
Josh: Especially if I want to get home from work. Now I just need to go south. Not that I don't know my directions.
Jason: I don't
Josh: Oh, really? Did you konw that Droid has a compass app?
Jason: I didn't. I mean I can tell where I'm going if I stop to look around but I never really needed to know which direction I was heading.
Josh: Hint: If you're on the highway, going I-75 south, chances are that you're going south.
Jason: Yeah, usually I trust those signs.
Jason: I broke my f*#@ing toe this morning. So the Bengals better f*#@ing win.
Josh: You seriously broke your toe?
Jason: Yeah. I kicked our coffee table as I was walking by and looked down and my pinky toe on my right foot was jutting out to the right side.
Josh: Dude, I didn't ask. Friggin' didn't ask.
The next day:
Jason: I'm going to be out for a little while this morning, I have to go to the hospital.
Jason: My foot is a lot more messed up than I thought. I can't set my toe myself. Keeps popping out of place and I don't want it to heal that way.
Josh: You had me at going to the hospital. No need on descriptions.
Jason: Do you get grossed out w/ that stuff?
Josh: Nope. Just, you know, going to the hospital is perfectly fine.
After beating the Jacksonville Jaguars:
Jason: See this is the kind of game I would expect the old bengals to "loose". I'm hoping this really is a new team.
Josh: Yes, but do you think they'd win or LOSE?
Jason: Yeah.. whatever.
Jason: Oh, don't be so Emo, Jason.
Jason: I'm never EMO.
Josh: Saying whatever is typically the first sign of a genetic emo characteristic. Fight against it.
Jason: I will fight.
Two hours later after winning a bet.
Josh: Hey, my name is Domination. Nice to meet you.
Jason: I almost said whatever again.. WHAT'S HAPPENING TO ME!?!
Josh: Your transformation is accelerating. Soon your nails will suddenly turn black and your jet black hair will be all straight. The eyeliner transition will be more gradual.
Jason: If that happens I need you to shoot me in the head like I'm a damn zombie.
Josh: CDC may have a cure.
Jason: I'll call them immediately. My guess is that their cure is to "drop my balls".
Josh: They'll deny it exists. If rumor of a cure got out, it would incite panic with nearly 15% of country's parents with 13-18 year old sons.
Jason: Good point.
Josh: I made that percentage up.
Jason: No. Way.
Josh: Just look in the mirror, smile and say, "I love my life." Do that once a day and it should keep the emo transition from taking over. At least it'll neutralize the cellular decay.
Jason: I will start right now. How about I say this: "I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and gosh darnit, people like me"
Josh: Because you're not having a Stuart Smalley crises... are you?