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Bengals Bytes (1/16): Will they stay?

The Bengals have a load of free agents, and the question has become, who will they keep? The Steelers will officially be without two key starters, and a reminder that cancer sucks.

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Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Bengals, Steelers rack up nearly $64K in fines
Nearly a week after the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Cincinnati Bengals 18-16 at Paul Brown Stadium, and four days after Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict was suspended for a shoulder-to-helmet hit on Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown, the National Football League handed out six fines totaling $63,685 for both teams on Friday afternoon. Following the Dec. 13 regular season game, both teams combined for $145,000 worth of fines.

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Antonio Brown ruled out against Denver Broncos, gets apology from Adam Jones
Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown has been ruled out for Sunday's playoff game at Denver, prompting an apology later Friday from the player who had accused him of faking an injury earlier in the week. In an Instagram post, Bengals cornerback Adam Jones wished Brown well as he recovers from a concussion suffered on a brutal hit from Cincinnati linebacker Vontaze Burfict in the final minute of the Steelers' 18-16 wild-card win on Saturday.

Bengals name Zampese OC, Haslett as LB coach
The Bengals on Friday moved quickly to fill the offensive coordinator role left vacant when Hue Jackson left to become head coach of the Cleveland Browns by naming Ken Zampese as offensive coordinator. The team also announced that former NFL head coach Jim Haslett will be linebackers coach, replacing Matt Burke who left for the same role with the Miami Dolphins.

Captains endorse continuity with Zampese
Ken Zampese, who has coached the two best passing seasons in Bengals history, replaced Hue Jackson as offensive coordinator Friday in a move embraced by both offensive captains for the sake of continuity with an experienced coach that has been with quarterback Andy Dalton for every turn in his development. The club also announced Friday that former NFL and UFL head coach Jim Haslett is the club’s new linebackers coach, replacing Matt Burke, in what looks to be the beginning of the biggest facelift to the defensive staff since head coach Marvin Lewis took over in 2003.

Bengals Beat Podcast: Playoff Fallout, Part 2
Bengals beat writers Paul Dehner Jr. and Jim Owczarski couldn't conquer all the fallout from Saturday's loss to the Steelers in one episode so they break out part two to make sure we cover all the ground. We dive specifically into Hue Jackson landing in Cleveland, Vance Joseph to Miami, possible OC replacements and thoughts on all 15 Bengals free agents. Plus, hear from George Iloka, Adam Jones and keeping it real with Pat Sims.

Looking ahead to what might happen to Bengals free agents
The Bengals have 15 players who are free agents heading into the 2016 season, some of whom were starters and a couple who were little used reserves, and despite having a little over $30 million in salary cap space (per they won't be able to re-sign them all.

Random Bytes

Ranking every NFL stadium from best to worst
Alicia Barnhart traveled the country visiting every NFL stadium in record time. Her experience, which she told The Comeback about here, qualified her for the Guiness Book of World Records. Here, Alicia is back, sharing thoughts on each stadium in the NFL.

DeAngelo Williams Injury: Updates on Steelers RB's Ankle and Recovery
Pittsburgh Steelers running back DeAngelo Williams was carted off with a sprained ankle against the Cleveland Browns in Week 17. It's unclear if he will be able to return to the field.

Cam Newton vs. Russell Wilson has makings of classic rivalry for Carolina Panthers, Seattle Seahawks - NFL
Over the years, football has spawned a number of quarterback rivalries for the ages. Bradshaw and Staubach in the '70s, Marino and Kelly in the '80s, Aikman and Young in the '90s, and of course, the best of them all, Brady and Manning in this whole century. But now, although few fans have yet realized it, we may already be watching the NFL's next great quarterback rivalry.

2016 NFL Draft: Matt Miller's Scouting Notebook for Divisional Weekend
As NFL teams meet and get ready for Senior Bowl week (January 25-30) in Mobile, Alabama, information about rankings is starting to leak out. For example, I've spoken with seven teams (scouts, coaches or general managers) that have Mackensie Alexander over Vernon Hargreaves and Jalen Ramsey at defensive back.

NFL playoffs divisional-round preview - What to expect from New England Patriots, Green Bay Packers
With the wild-card games over, eight teams remain in the playoffs. NFL Nation reporters look ahead to what this weekend has in store for each playoff team.

Reggie Wayne Retires: Latest Details, Comments and Reaction
Longtime Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne has decided to retire from the NFL after a career that featured six Pro Bowl selections, a first-team All-Pro nod and a Super Bowl title. Speaking to Mike Chappell of CBS 4 in Indianapolis, the 37-year-old Wayne said about his decision to retire that he's "done."

Chris Mortensen Diagnosed with Throat Cancer
Longtime NFL analyst Chris Mortensen is taking a leave of absence from ESPN after being diagnosed with throat cancer last week. ESPN confirmed the news and passed along a statement from the 64-year-old, who provided further information about his decision and outlook: