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Will Chad Johnson be with the Bengals in 2008?

This Pro Football Talk note:


After keeping his mouth shut for most of the past couple of months, Bengals receiver Chad Johnson a/k/a Ocho Cinco a/k/a Ocho Stinko was interviewed Friday on Sirius NFL Radio by Adam Schein and Ross Tucker.

Though we didn't hear the whole thing (we're trying to get audio clips or a transcript), Johnson was talking openly about not being with the team in 2008.

In fact, its sounded as if he's resigned to the fact that he won't be back. At times, we got the impression that he wants to go to a new team.

We'll get more info on what he actually said, and we'll be posting it here.

This is one of those rumors/stories that you just don't know how to react. Both sides of this argument make sense. Even though Lewis wouldn't commit one way or another about Chad's career during his recent interview with Bill Rabinowitz, he surely didn't give any endorsements.

For keeping Chad Johnson. Including this season (with one game remaining), Chad Johnson is averaging over the past five season: 92 receptions, 1,348 yards receiving and eight touchdowns. The production he and Carson Palmer have enjoyed, makes one think twice about dumping Chad off at the Ohio border. Sadly, seeing Chad Johnson become horribly ineffective on third downs and in the red zone, his stats over a five year span is all I have.

Against keeping Chad Johnson. Well, there's several beliefs. Chad Johnson has been called out, via PFT, that the team is unhappy with his antics and constant shouting at Carson Palmer. He's believed, by many, to be a distraction and a lockerroom disruption. Stats are beautiful and all, but stats have never been the reason why teams win. Just a medium for getting there. With teams like the Titans and Eagles struggling to acquire productive receivers, it makes you think that the team could receive several high draft picks -- after all, a productive multi Pro Bowl receiver is worth a lot.

We haven't a clue what will happen with Chad this off-season. Lewis is, for the most part, noncommittal while Chad Johnson is speaking more freely about his chances of playing somewhere else next season. You get that feeling he could be gone. Personally, and this is strictly my view, I wouldn't have a problem with a Chad-less Cincinnati Bengals.

And it appears that Lewis is very unhappy about Chris Henry's work ethic -- though it's depressing that he has to comment that he's pleased that he hasn't gotten into trouble.

With all that said, makes you think that the Bengals may -- and perhaps should -- aggressively rebuild the wide receiver position with T.J. Houshmandzadeh at the helm.