This was likely the final training camp practice in which shoulder pads and helmets were both used, and it didn't even last the whole session. Marvin Lewis had everyone go without shoulder pads for the second-half of Wednesday's session in hopes of lightening up practice to avoid any more injuries.
With Thursday likely being special teams work and walkthroughs, camp is essentially over as far as the hard stuff goes.
That set the stage for Cincinnati to have most of their starting offensive line back on the field. Andre Smith was back but didn't participate in 11-on-11s as the Bengals continue to be cautious with him after a concussion suffered early in camp.
With Marshall Newhouse out with an injured shoulder, Tanner Hawkinson was the starting right tackle. Dre Kirkpatrick was held out due to a hip injury, but should play vs. the Jets Saturday.
With Clint Boling and Mike Pollak resting, Rey Hopkins continued to run with the first-team offense. He's a lock for the practice squad if he's waived, but the odds favor him being on the final 53-man roster. Though, it would be niceto have Pollak starting at guard and Boling backing up both guard spots. It doesn't look like those two will play Saturday.
The same cannot be said for Cobi Hamilton who looks 50-50 at best right now to make the 53-man roster. Hamilton did his best to improve those odds with a good showing today. He skided over the middle to pull down a TD-strike from Andy Dalton, along with several other big gains. He's got some good momentum going with a string of good practices. With a good performance on Saturday, Hamilton should push himself onto the right side of the imaginary roster bubble.
As for Dalton, after arguably his worst day of camp so far on Tuesday, he had a nice bounce-back today. His accuracy was better and the timing on some of his throws was superb. There were instances of receivers having the ball in their gut just as they turned around coming out of their breaks. Timing and hitting receivers in stride are two things Dalton has been noticeably better this camp, as well as having a little more zip on the short-to-intermediate throws.
Matt Scott had to leave practice with shoulder soreness, but Lewis said he was fine and should be good to go Saturday. Jason Campbell was out and will likely miss Saturday's game.