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Bengals Bytes (12/29): Alex Redmond could be a diamond in the rough

Alex Redmond could show us that he has deserved to be playing this whole time in the season finale.

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NFL: Detroit Lions at Cincinnati Bengals David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Cincinnati Bengals’ Alex Redmond could be a hidden gem
He’s big. He’s absurdly strong. He’s funny. He’s a very unique dresser. And he’s someone who makes every offensive and defensive lineman in the Cincinnati Bengals’ locker room nervous. “Scary” is an adjective I’ve heard from multiple people since Redmond joined the team last year as an undrafted free agent out of UCLA. He was the youngest draft-eligible player, just 20 years old. Super raw, too. In so many ways. Admittedly, he said his technique and study habits weren’t great in his first season. Neither was his conditioning.

Cincinnati Bengals' William Jackson III reaping rewards of playing time
William Jackson III came off the turf at Paul Brown Stadium early Thursday afternoon, cold weather gear covering up all but his eyes. He peeled the face warmers off, his gloves and then the blue surgical gloves underneath the gloves. December football like this is all new for the Houston native and second-year Cincinnati Bengals corner.

Cincinnati Bengals players endorse return for coach Marvin Lewis
Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis continues to refute a national report that he intends to walk away from the team at the end of the season when his contract expires, saying nothing has been decided. A few of the veteran Bengals players on the roster said they hope that is the case and that there is a chance Lewis will be back for a 16th season in 2018, something they said they would endorse. “Yeah, I’d love to have Marvin back,” starting offensive lineman Clint Boling said. “But it’s out of my control.”

Some Bengals players sound like they want the team to keep Marvin Lewis as coach
After 15 seasons on the Bengals sideline, there's a good chance that Sunday's game against the Ravens will be the final time that Marvin Lewis takes the field as the team's head coach. The writing has basically been on the wall since mid-December when a report came out that Lewis was planning to step down as coach at the end of the year. If Lewis changes his mind for some reason and decides to stick around, it sounds like there are several players in the locker room who would be happy to see that happen.

TDBH: Bengals go back to the future to name Wyche head coach
Ten Bengals contacted by The Cincinnati Enquirer have never met him. Running back Charles Alexander asks how to spell his name. Cornerback Louis Breeden says all he knows about him is that he’s the Bengals’ new head coach. But Paul Brown and Bill Walsh know Sam Wyche well and that’s all that matters when word emerges today that one of Brown’s original Bengals and Indiana University head coach has been named to succeed Forrest Gregg five days after Gregg leaves for the Packers.

Quick hits: Mixon works, Tez doesn't; Gio named Block winner; Kicker Brown surfaces again
It looks like the Bengals are going to have rookie running back Joe Mixon (ankle) but not linebacker Vontaze Burfict (shoulder) for Sunday’s finale (4:25 p.m.-Cincinnati’s Channel 12) in Baltimore going by how they deployed in Thursday’s practice under the University of Cincinnati bubble. Mixon, cornerback William Jackson (knee), and slot receiver Alex Erickson (ankle) all went limited after sitting Wednesday.

TDBH: P.B. taps disciplinarian Gregg as head coach
After back-to-back listless _ and worse to the Hall-of-Fame owner _ sloppy four-win seasons, Bengals president Paul Brown dips into his past today and hires a head coach in the mold of his good friend and late Packers head coach Vince Lombardi. Forrest Gregg, the Pro Football Hall of Fame left tackle Lombardi called his greatest player on his two Super Bowl championship teams, brings his well-known iron fist to a team well-known for its lack of discipline. At today’s news conference Brown says Gregg is the only man he talks to about replacing Homer Rice and he beams with delight that Gregg has extracted himself from the two years he has remaining on his contract with Toronto of Canadian Football League.

Top 50 Moments: Bengals claim first AFC North title
As the last two minutes count down at Ford Field on Dec. 18, 2005, an orange-clad crowd behind the Bengals bench chants alternately, "Who Dey," and "Marvin, Marvin, Marvin" in honor of head coach Marvin Lewis as Bengaldom savors the 41-17 victory over the Lions for their first AFC North division title and their first play-off appearance in 15 years. "It's a great day to be a Bengal," says quarterback Carson Palmer, whose blazing assault on the team record book leads this 11-3 run. "Our fans are awesome. They always are. Bengals fans are great."

Fantasy Football Season Recap
Russell Wilson is the perfect example of “it’s not how you start; it’s how you finish.” Wilson’s first two games totaled 356 passing yards, 74 rushing yards, 1 touchdown, no interceptions, and a lost fumble. Many fantasy owners jumped ship with Wilson racking up 23.64 fantasy points heading into Week 3. That is where Wilson turned on the jets, amassing 318.84 fantasy points over the next 13 games. Only Deshaun Watson had a higher per-game fantasy point average (25.27 for Watson, 22.57 for Wilson) this season. Had he not went down with a torn ACL, he very well could have been the #1 QB this season. As it stands, Wilson takes that 2017 honor.

AFC North Bytes

Ravens release injury report for Thursday; WR Jeremy Maclin did not practice
Jeremy Maclin (knee) was the only Raven who missed practice on Thursday. In addition, Patrick Ricard (neck), Austin Howard (knee), Jermaine Eluemunor (shoulder) and Brandon Williams (back) were limited-participants during Thursday’s practice. While, Mike Wallace (knee) was a full-participant.

Joe Thomas on the state of the Browns, the plan and Hue Jackson's future
Joe Thomas made an appearance at the podium on Thursday afternoon and essentially delivered a state-of-the-Browns address. Thomas, the All-Pro left tackle who is out for the season with a torn triceps, has remained visible with the team following the injury against the Titans on Oct. 22.

Steelers' Marcus Gilbert says Ben Roethlisberger and Le'Veon Bell will sit out the Browns game
If Steelers right tackle Marcus Gilbert is correct, Ben Roethlisberger and Le'Veon Bell will join Antonio Brown on the sidelines for Sunday's season finale against the Browns at Heinz Field. If the Killer B's sit out, the Browns might actually have a chance to avoid becoming only the second team in NFL history to go 0-16. Of course, it didn't help last year. The Browns still lost 27-24 in overtime en route to 1-15.

Random Bytes

Jameis Winston Regrets Outburst vs. Panthers: 'I Know I Can't Do That'
Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston lost control at the end of his team's loss to the Panthers on Sunday, but he expressed remorse for his actions. Officials ruled he lost the ball on what turned out to be Tampa Bay's last offensive play in the 22-19 defeat. The quarterback responded by charging the field as those nearby tried to keep him in check.

Dysfunctional Giants Need Locker Room Leader Who Will Get Tough with Teammates
If you ask people across football about the Giants, they'll focus on one thing: The team lacks character. Not characters. The Giants have those. But character. "No leaders," said one AFC front-office executive.

Dave Gettleman Hired as Giants GM After Jerry Reese Firing
The New York Giants have hired former Carolina Panthers architect Dave Gettleman as their new general manager following Jerry Reese's ouster on Dec. 4. The Giants announced Gettleman's hiring on Thursday with a joint statement from team president John Mara and chairman Steve Tisch