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Pre-season game #3 thoughts...

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OK, you've heard the "epic" return Monday night, but there's more we need to touch on going into tonight's game.

Questionable: Scott Kooistra, Frostee Rucker and Hannibal Navies -- missed Saturday's practice from injury. Starters that are questionable are Brian Simmons, Chris Henry and Deltha O'Neal.

OUT: Chris Perry, Jonathan Fanene, and Adam Kieft.

The Bengals are riding a 7-game winning streak against the NFC at home. The streak is as follows:

Packers, 21-14
Vikings, 37-8
Giants, 23-22
Dallas, 26-3
49ers, 41-38
Seahawks, 27-24
Saints, 20-13 (one of two wins in 2002)

The Bengals are on an eight-game winning streak against the NFC (at home or away) last losing to the Rams 10-27 in 2003. The Bengals have won 10 of their last 12 against the NFC sweeping the North last season and the East in 2004.

Marvin Lewis on Palmer playing in pre-season game #4 (against Indy): "It's his preference to play against Indianapolis. He expressed that a couple of weeks ago. We'll follow that plan. He would prefer not to have a bye week."

The Indy Star reports the Colts' varsity should play "briefly" Friday. reports Clear Channel and the Bengals have come to an agreement to extend the current contract through 2010.

My top-five things to look for

  1. Carson Palmer's accuracy, mobility and fearlessness in the pocket.
  2. DeDe Dorcey taking advantage of his opportunity; seeing if he can block during passing downs.
  3. Sam Adams in the middle; haven't seen the guy perform to this point. Is he as advertised?
  4. I have seen very little that can prove Ratliff will become a starting cornerback. He's the type that plays the zone well; just don't ask him to cover someone one-on-one. I have a friend who spoke to a former Bengals defensive back and he said that Ratliff is better served at nickel. With O'Neal out, can Ratliff prove people wrong? Or has Johnathon Joseph leap-frogged him already?
  5. An improvement in the MNF booth. Although, I'm not likely to listen as much with the radio broadcast. But I'm sure I'll find something to complain about with the MNF booth -- so far, simply terrible.

I wonder...
...if Odell Thurman will play. The suspended linebacker returned to practice on August 15th but little (if any) progress has been reported by the Bengals beat writers. I don't suspect we'll see ol' #51 because we haven't heard anything. But it would be nice to know how the kid was doing...

...if Tony Kornheiser will call the Jerk-Line because Mike Tirico won't let him leave after finding out the game is projected past his 10 P.M. bedtime. Joe sits in silence waiting to be called on... Speaking of Tony, he's convinced there's a Kornheiser Kurse.

Let's examine my first preseason game: Oakland at Minnesota. During the game, the Vikings' first-round draft choice, Chad Greenway, got hurt, did not pass Go, did not collect $200 and was quickly dispatched to injured reserve. A couple of days later, Minnesota's Koren Robinson got arrested for doing 100 in a 55-mph zone and, oh, by the way, sadly he had a relapse and was cited for driving while intoxicated and fleeing from police. (I don't know that anything terrible happened to any of the Raiders, other than having to go back to Oakland.)

My second game was New Orleans vs. Dallas. Terrell Owens had begun to practice the week of the game. Now, two days after I was in the booth comes news that Owens aggravated his hammy (and his coach) and will miss at least the next exhibition game. The Saints didn't suffer any particular injuries, but Drew Brees and Reggie Bush couldn't get anything going at all on offense. While Coach Sean Payton would hardly blame me for that, I'm inclined to take the credit.

...if Chris Perry will remain a Bengal. Looking at some numbers, I have no doubt he'll remain with the team. If he's cut, the Bengals would take a $2.8 million body slam against the cap. His relatively low salary would mean the Bengals would actually lose $1.6 million...

...if more games will be released for the Xbox 360. Other than Madden 2007, the games playable for the next-gen system are very limited. They really should rethink (i.e. not lie) their strategy that the Xbox 360 can play original Xbox games. Take it from me, they don't. Liars. Now I'm stuck playing only one game (pretty expensive purchase) for half the cost of my dream big-screen television...

...why recent Hurricane names have German decent. The origins of Ernesto (from the form of Ernest) comes from the Germanic eornost meaning 'seriousness'. Katrina too is German. My only question is "where's Hurricane Josh?". At least that way I could go up to a honey and start rockin' out, "rock you like a Hurricane".