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Bengals Banter: Forbes Lists, Ben Utecht's Grievance And Thursday's Headlines

May 22, 2012; Cincinnati, OH USA; Cincinnati Bengals guard Kevin Zeitler (68) during organized team activities at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-US PRESSWIRE
May 22, 2012; Cincinnati, OH USA; Cincinnati Bengals guard Kevin Zeitler (68) during organized team activities at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-US PRESSWIRE

+ MAKING FORBES LIST. Just in case you missed it on Wednesday, Forbes released a list of the Top 10 Influencers in the Business of Sports. The list they developed captured three categories, ranging from reach (size of the audience), resonance (activity that influencer creates when publishing) and relevance (to a particular online conversation based on frequency of keyword use).

What's great is that there are five members of SB Nation on the list of the top 10 Influencers in the Business of Sports. What was unexpected is that Cincy Jungle ranked No. 7. As David Fucillo (who was No. 1) said with a Ron Burgundy impersonation (with the hip 'stach and comb-over), "We're kind of a big deal." So a hearty thank you to all of you for sticking by us over the years to discuss and chat about the thing we dearly love... Farscape!

+ CONFUSION ON UTECHT'S GRIEVANCE. While the Associated Press was catching up with former Bengals tight end Ben Utecht, focusing on his stories of lost memories after five reported concussions (kind of a big deal in the NFL these day), including a career-ending shot during Cincinnati's preseason in 2009, Utecht briefly spoke about an unresolved grievance he had against the Cincinnati Bengals.

We did a little research (aka, killer Google searches) and Michael Martinez with Fox Sports West wrote a February 2012 piece about Utecht's grievance, but instead of it being against the Bengals, Martinez wrote that it's against the league.

Utecht filed a grievance against the league and visited with doctors to seek their opinions about his injuries. He learned things that he said NFL physicians never told him.

"As I went and got my second opinion and met with two neutral physicians throughout my grievance situation, I started gaining all this information that had been out there and started doing my own research and learning all these things that have been case studies for the last 15 years," he said.

"For a guy like me that has passions and an identity outside of football, these things are important to know. My decision-making process after my second and third concussion might have been different vs. continuing to (play). It’s all a little subjective and tough to say, but I really believe the more balance you have in anything you do, the more prepared you are to make decisions."

Asked why he believes the league wasn’t more forthcoming about the risks he faced by continuing to play, Utecht said, "I think whoever can answer that is really going to (shed) some light. I don’t know. I want to know the answer to that question."

+ STEWART REPORTEDLY TEARS ACL. Reports began surfacing on Wednesday that undrafted free agent running back Rodney Stewart tore his ACL during Tuesday's OTA session. The injury won't impact the team's overall makeup, with BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Bernard Scott and Brian Leonard being our leading candidates at running back with an expected competition between Dan "Boom" Herron and Cedric Peerman for special teams favor.

Still it's a heart-breaker for a kid looking to continue his football career, only to have it shattered 15 minutes into his first-ever OTA session.

+ MENTORSHIP EXISTS IN CINCINNATI. One would think that when younger players enter the league, older players would be a little more hostile. Think about it. Younger players are essentially replacing said older players, the new NFL, the next generation. Not in Cincinnati where the veteran class of older cornerbacks are helping out the younger players.

+ SOME RANKINGS. Interested in an ESPN AFC North blogger ranking the best players at each division? Then have some fun here and here.