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Bengals First Team to Play for a Longer Period of Time Than Usual on Friday Night

Normally, when it comes to the first preseason game, fans get to watch the first-team offense and defense on the field for about two seconds. They come out, they play for a couple series and then they're usually done. It isn't until the second and third preseason games that we get to watch the first-team offense and defense for any extended period of time.

However, this season, thanks to the lockout, has been nothing close to normal so far.

Thanks to the shortened offseason, Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis has decided that the first team offense and defense will be on the field longer than usual during Friday night's preseason opener against the Lions in Detroit.

"A little bit (longer). It's going to be important for us to let the guys play a little bit longer than they would in the past. After this week, we have a challenge where we play two games in a short period of time. We have to combine those eight quarters in between the two games and get guys time, which will be a challenge."

Of course, the absolute worst thing for the Bengals would be to get a guy like Andy Dalton, A.J. Green, Jerome Simpson, Cedric Benson, or really anybody at all hurt in the preseason. However, Not only do the coaches want to make sure that they have the right guys on the field, but the players, especially the rookies who have been thrust into a starting position, would benefit from some extra time on the field so they can see what another defense (or offense) looks like in a game setting.

Friday night will be Dalton's first chance to read another team's defense as a professional quarterback. A.J. Green will go up against somebody who's not a teammate of his for the first time. Rey Maualuga will have his first chance to lead the defense as the team's middle linebacker against an offense that isn't comprised of his friends.

Being on the field for a longer period of time on Friday is a good thing for everybody. That is if everybody stays injury free.

So, get your popcorn (or whatever it is you eat during football games) because football's back and on Friday night we get to watch Andy Dalton and the first string offense stay on the field for four seconds instead of two!