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Bengals Bytes (7/2): Returning home

Alex Erickson went back to Wisconsin to run his football camp. The Ravens lead the NFL in drug suspensions. Did the actual MVP win each year, or did the voters get it wrong?

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at New York Giants Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Alex Erickson returns to Darlington for skills camp
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Alex Erickson returned to his hometown of Darlington, Wisconsin this week to run the Alex Erickson Skills Camp. Dozens of young Darlington football players learned about the game from Erickson and two of his former Wisconsin Badger teammates, Joe Schobert and Joel Stave.

David Pollack shares advice on parenting young athletes
As a three-time first-team All-American at Georgia and then a 2005 first-round pick of the Cincinnati Bengals, David Pollack was once atop the football world with no end in sight. That all changed on Sept. 17, 2006, in just the second game of the outside linebacker's second year in the NFL.

Do Bengals Have Best Backfield In The NFL?
For the past several years, the Bengals running back situation has been a question. Giovani Bernard had shown promise before injuries slowed him down, Jeremy Hill never quite blossomed into a lead back, Rex Burkhead showed flashes of brilliance but now plays in New England.

Off-season Report Card: Cincinnati Bengals
Like every off-season, the Cincinnati Bengals shed players like a sieve. Cincinnati has drafted so well over the last decade that they’ve been more of a feeder team, developing wide receivers and defensive backs for other clubs, while trying in vain to hold onto a rightly expensive group of stars. The latest pillage happened along their offensive line that saw maybe their two best guys, Andrew Whitworth and Kevin Zettler, depart for fabulous cash and prizes.

A.J. Green wants to follow Julio Jones’ lead
Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green was on pace to set a career high in receptions last year when a torn hamstring brought his season to an end. Green spent much of the offseason working with trainers in hopes of avoiding a repeat of the injury problem this year and he’d also like to avoid a repeat of his outsized role in the team’s offense.

AFC North Bytes

As deadline approaches, Le’Veon Bell is “good with everything”
Within the next 17 days, the Steelers and running back Le’Veon Bell will, or won’t, strike a long-term deal. However it works out, Bell apparently has no complaints. “I’m good with everything, just taking it day to day for real,” Bell said Friday, via Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com.

Ravens lead the NFL in drug suspensions
The Ravens lead the league in one stat they’d prefer not to: Suspensions for failed drug tests. When Ravens tight end Darren Waller was suspended for the full 2017 season last week, it marked his second suspension and the 13th total suspension, coming from 10 different players, that the Ravens have received since 2010 for either performance-enhancing drugs and drugs of abuse. According to ESPN, that’s the most of any team.

Random Bytes

Mitchell Trubisky behind starter Glennon 'all the way'
A month out from Bears training camp, rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky has no plans to upset the apple cart in Chicago. Speaking Friday with SiriusXM NFL Radio, the No. 2 pick in the draft called veteran passer Mike Glennon the unquestioned starter.

Revisiting notable NFL MVP races: When did voters get it wrong?
Many clamored for James Harden to receive basketball's most prestigious award. Kawhi Leonard could have been a solid choice. Still, I think the NBA got it right. That's not to say these things don't go south sometimes. As a kid, I vividly remember voters handing Robin Yount the 1989 American League MVP award when everyone and their mother (my granny, too) knew Ruben Sierra was the best player in the A.L. I'm not bitter -- just a disgruntled Rangers fan, 28 years later.

Matt Miller's Scouting Notebook: Is Paxton Lynch Ready to Start for the Broncos?
Paxton Lynch is the forgotten quarterback of the 2016 NFL draft, but that could all change when the Denver Broncos face the Los Angeles Chargers on Monday Night Football to open the season at home on September 11. Lynch, last year's No. 26 overall pick who started just two games as a rookie, has impressed in minicamp and organized team activities (OTAs) this summer. But has he done enough to overtake incumbent Trevor Siemian?