- In the Cincinnati market, there's more interest it seems with the Reds off-season than the Bengals regular season. There's a certain excitement with Wayne Krivsky, the Reds GM, having a full off-season to fill this roster. The Reds conversation far exceeded Bengals conversation. Is this town still a baseball town?
- Injury is still a problem. Dexter Jackson and Rashad Jeanty are most likely out -- even though they're listed as doubtful. So far this season when a player was listed as "doubtful" on Friday, they've never made it on the field. Even some listed as questionable failed to dress up. Rich Braham is out and it's up in the air when he'll return. I've heard a few more weeks and I've heard it's the entire season. Tab Perry, a victim of keeping your key players in during a blowout (more below), should be back in the next few weeks. All injury updates here.
- Anthony Wright undergoes an emergency appendectomy on Friday the 13th.
- The Bengals are trying to reverse the Men in Black memory loss toy by going through basic tackling 101.
- I've heard that Carson Palmer will start at Center against Tampa Bay and Sam Adams will start at Quarterback. Of course that's silly Kirkendall; shut up. Eric Steinbach worked at center with the first team offense. Marvin Lewis says that's business as usual. Riiiight. So if Steinbach starts at center, Whitworth would start at guard. Some critics of this move say you hurt not one, but both positions by playing guys out of their natural position. All I know is Palmer needs protection and, for the love of god, to stop fumbling.
- Chris Henry, the uber-villain of the NFL, was suspended for the next two games by our life saving NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. To me, it's hypocritical. China is a major human rights violator by the HRIC yet Chris Henry hurts the image of the NFL? Why is this relevant? China will host, at the excitement of Goodell, a pre-season NFL game next season. I'm not saying Henry shouldn't be punished, but it's moronic, hypocritical and downright greedy to reward China with an NFL game -- even though it's pre-season - when their conduct and "character" is fifty times (being generous here) more outrageous than Henry's actions. Some will say, give Goodell some time to make an impression. Well, he has. He's shown he'd rather give an NFL game to a major human rights violator over an American city that doesn't have the opportunity to see a game -- while suspending Henry for conduct issues. What logic is there in this? Even the Olympic Committee is badgering China to clean up its act before the '08 games. Maybe it's just me. I just don't like his emphasis on character and image before announcing a game in China. Sorry Roger, dumb move.
- So will Kelley Washington and Antonio Chatman step up for the suspended Henry and injured Tab Perry? The injury to Tab Perry is just an example of why you should take out your key players during a blowout. Leading Cleveland 34-10 with 2:07 left in the game, Palmer throws an interception. This was the play that Chad was lit up by Brian Russell. The Browns scored a touchdown and the Bengals prepared for an on-side. Cleveland kicked away, Tab Perry ran backwards to pick up the ball and was tackled at the three-yard line. With :54 left in the game, Perry hobbled off the field and we haven't seen him since. Not only is Palmer passing right before the two minute warning with a 24-point lead nearly losing Chad on a violent collision, but we lost our key kickoff return guy. Sure, hindsight is 20/20. But when you have a big lead in a game that saw Rich Braham carted off, Dexter Jackson severely injure his ankle and David Pollack break his neck, you'd just assume enough is enough. It's like eating chili the night before a hot date. You know nothing good will come out of it (pun intended).
- I hate vehicle running backs. For years the Bus ran over us; he had better numbers against the Bengals than a lot of running backs have for their careers. Sunday we'll have to wreck the Cadillac. Our rush defense, against a winless team, is what has me worried about this game. Can the Bengals offense pull out of their slump? Will Chad Johnson have a reception over 18 yards?
- Reggie McNeal says, "That's (playing Quarterback) my first love. I always want to play quarterback, still do. That hasn't changed. Right now, I'm at receiver, so I'm just making the best out of it." OK, quit moping about playing Quarterback; it won't happen. Why not work to be a bad-ass wide receiver? Let me say something about Reggie McNeal. I have no problem that he got crazy drunk -- we all do it. I think he played it smart by asking someone else to drive -- the dumb part is he picked another drunk to drive him. But since he's found company with Henry and Odell Thurman, he's going to face an uphill image battle. But that's not my point. Since he's joined this team, he's commented he'd rather play quarterback numerous times. OK, that's fine; he should want to play the position he grew up playing. But he failed to make the opening kickoff roster and none of the 32 teams in the NFL wanted him as a quarterback. If the Bengals didn't pick him up in the sixth round, he could have fallen out of the draft. Maybe not. But if he doesn't work and step up as a receiver soon, he may lose any chance he has at being an everyday NFL player. In the end he'd probably regret that more than wishing he played quarterback.