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Bengals Bytes (6/4): Best ever

Carlos Dunlap has his goals set pretty high for 2016. Due to the nature of OTAs rules, Carson Palmer is forced to pretend more during practice, and one of the greatest athletes and men passed away last night.

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Watch out, Michael Strahan: Bengals' Carlos Dunlap wants 23 sacks
Carlos Dunlap's first order of business when he entered the NFL in 2010 was to look up the league's rookie single-season sack record. As he began his career, the Cincinnati Bengals defensive end wanted to chase down quarterbacks better than Jevon Kearse did in 1999, the year Kearse posted a rookie-record 14.5 sacks for Tennessee.

Hobson's Choice: backers and bounces
The media has only seen two of the six practices, but from what I’m hearing Dawson looks better than he did as a rookie. He’s fast and flows to the ball, but this is a big year for him. No question he’s a talented guy. His main challenge is proving he has down-to-down reliability and winning the trust of the coaches, just like it was last year.

Random Bytes

Lawrence Taylor’s wife arrested for attacking him
When it comes to Hall of Fame linebacker Lawrence Taylor and alleged violations of the law, L.T. is usually the one posing for the mug shot. This time, he's the alleged victim. According to TMZ, the wife of Taylor faces domestic violence charges after allegedly attacking Taylor on Thursday.

Steelers own top spot in first 2016 AFC projections
The top few teams in the AFC have remained near the front of the pack for the past few seasons. For some of those teams, there are reasons to be concerned, which leaves room for a sleeper to make an impact in the playoffs. While plenty can change between now and the start of the season, here is how I expect each AFC team’s schedule to shake out.

Appreciation: Muhammad Ali was a champion in and out of the boxing ring
When Muhammad Ali died at age 74 on Friday, the once-strident, generation-defining voice of defiance that seemed cruelly muted to a barely audible whisper by Parkinson's disease was silenced forever. Or was it? Won't America always hear Ali's words — the rhyme and the reason — ringing in its collective consciousness?

NFL players react to the death of Muhammad Ali
Muhammad Ali, considered one of greatest boxers of all-time and a sporting icon, died on Friday, his representative Bob Gunnell announced. He was 74. A three-time world heavyweight champion, Ali died after being admitted to a Phoenix hospital Thursday for a respiratory issue, Gunnell said. Ali's funeral will take place in Louisville, Kentucky, according to Gunnell. "The Ali family would like to thank everyone for their thoughts, prayers and support and asks for privacy at this time," Gunnell wrote in a statement.

Browns, 49ers underdogs in first 16 weeks of the season
The Browns and 49ers surely will win one or more games in 2016. At this point, however, Vegas thinks they won’t. Via Yahoo Sports, the folks at have compiled the betting lines for the first 16 weeks of the 2016 season, and both the Browns and 49ers are currently underdogs in every game.

OTA rules force Carson Palmer to become a pretender
Organized team activities is an odd time for NFL players. Every success or failure comes with the caveat of practices being conducted in shorts, sans pads. Outside of the pads and time restraints during OTAs, teams aren't allowed to run certain types of defenses, including press man coverage on the outside. With those limitations, offenses could pick apart defenses if they wanted -- think of it as playing against soft prevent coverage all of the time.

Trimmed-down Todd Gurley enjoying California lifestyle
Surrounded by a large group of reporters, Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley looked as comfortable in front of the crowd as he does in his new California home. A year ago at this time, the Rams were pinning the hopes of their running game and offense to Gurley, the No. 10 overall pick. That might not have been so bad were it not for the fact Gurley was unable to participate in the team's organized team activities and was still recovering from a torn left ACL.

Cleveland Browns coach Hue Jackson is changing the game on minority hiring in the NFL
The pipeline is all but dry. Look, as Hue Jackson has, at the numbers. This season, there are only four African-American offensive coordinators and only one, the Tennessee Titans' Terry Robiskie, will call plays. There is only one African-American quarterbacks coach. After the 2015 season, there were seven head-coaching vacancies. All seven were filled by men who had experience on the offensive side of the ball. Mike Mularkey, Chip Kelly and Jackson had prior head-coaching experience, while Doug Pederson, Ben McAdoo, Adam Gase and Dirk Koetter had been offensive coordinators in 2015.

Derrick Coleman, former Seattle Seahawks fullback, charged with vehicular assault, hit-and-run
Former Seattle Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman has been charged with vehicular assault and felony hit-and-run stemming from a collision in Bellevue, Washington, last October. Coleman is scheduled for arraignment on June 16. If convicted of both charges, he could face a sentence of 12 to 14 months in jail.