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Bengals kickoff minicamp; Palmer says team is focused, "best talent we've had"

Today kicks off the team's weekend mandatory minicamp that goes through Saturday, June 20. As far as we know, we'll have the entire squad report. Chick Ludwig previews the minicamp at Paul Brown Stadium this weekend. James Walker will be in attendance also. Geoff Hobson breaks down the roster.

Carson Palmer is excited by the team's maturity and depth of talent, saying it's the best its been since he's been here.

“In my seven years here, this has been as good as its been,” Palmer said. “The mindset of the team, the amount of distractions is down and the focus is where it needs to be. As far as talent wise, this is probably the best talent we've had but the most maturity we've had by far. We're where we need to be, we’re headed in the right direction.”

He compares the team this year to the team last year.

“You compare where we are to last year, you could just tell we were a bad football team,” Palmer said. “Going into training camp, coming out of training camp. Week 1, it just felt terrible. We were out of synch, out of rhythm, all of our guys weren’t there. It was a scary year going in, then we start 0-2, 0-3, 0-4, you could see it coming.

Is there anything more pointless than a Chat on ESPN?

Michael Johnson has a chip on his shoulder after scouts and teams lowered his stock saying that he took plays off. "If they had asked any of my teammates, guys who played around me, and even guys who played against me, they would have told them that's bogus."

If the Bengals go with four defensive ends, Frostee Rucker is likely the odd man out.

When asked the question "What should the Bengals do with Ochocinco?", Charley Casserly and Rod Woodson agreed: Keep Him (not that there's a choice now).

Ben Utecht will be at Riverbend tonight, giving help to Maestro Erich Kunzel conducting "the Cincinnati Pops and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir."

Remember Alex Stepanovich; he backed up Eric Ghiaciuc in 2007 and started four games. The Falcons cut him on Wednesday, bringing their center count down to three. In other former tOSU players that made a stop in Cincinnati news, the Jacksonville Jaguars signed quarterback Todd Boeckman. Note, Boeckman only tried out during rookie camp.