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Bengals Bytes (8/4): Unleashing the beast

Marvin Lewis talks about making sure Carl Lawson get involved on defense, and he compares him to a former first round pick. James Harrison’s work out regimen seems to be worth its outrageous price. Ryan Tannehill may need season ending surgery.

NFL: Combine Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Bengals running back has brief injury scare - August 3 Camp Report
For perhaps the first time since training camp started second-round pick running back Joe Mixon didn't break off a long run, but that's because he didn't practice the entire time. Mixon was hurt about midway through practice and aside from standing in place during a drill in which the offense was practicing killing the clock to kick a field goal he didn't return.

The People vs. Vontaze Burfict - The Grueling Truth
Aggressive players have always been in the NFL. So why is Vontaze Burfict so often singled out for misconduct? A look at Burfict's record and reputation.

Former Bengals QB John Reaves, star passer from Florida, dies at home
Former Bengals backup quarterback John Reaves, who set NCAA passing records before his professional career, has been found dead at his home in Tampa. Reaves, 67, played nine mostly non-descript seasons in the NFL with the Eagles, Bengals, Vikings and Oilers before three solid years in the now-defunct USFL. He later went into coaching, and then real estate.

PHOTOS: See the Bengals’ Joe Mixon at training camp
The Cincinnati Bengals drafted running back Joe Mixon in the April NFL draft. He’s got the pads on now and is trying to earn a key role as a pro. Here’s how he looks.

Core Audience
No matter what Cody Core accomplishes in his pro football career, he will not go down as the best 199th-overall draft pick in NFL history. Thursday’s birthday boy Tom Brady (2000 NFL Draft) has that distinction wrapped up. But the wide receiver selected in the sixth round last year appears ready to play an expanded role in his second season with the Bengals.

Lewis News Conference Transcript 8/3
We are. I’ve been very pleased. Last year when we played Jacksonville in the preseason, we were getting ready to watch some of their players. As you go through and watch who they may or may not release, Chris is someone who stuck out to us. When the offseason came around this year and (Bengals director of player personnel) Duke (Tobin) had mentioned that he may be available, we obviously pulled the trigger. We looked at some things and decided to acquire Chris. He comes in here and has played some football in the NFL. Once you’ve been somewhere else, you end up with a different perspective when you come to a new team. He understands the competitive part of it.

Camp report: Why Lawson scraps like a free agent; Mixon says he's OK; Kickers all even
Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis called it Thursday a few hours before practice. Carl Lawson, the Bengals’ explosive rookie pass rusher who has been as exciting on defense as rookie running back Joe Mixon on offense, is going to be unleashed. And unleashed Lawson was Thursday as the up-tempo-all-the-time Auburn product got into two dustups with an offensive line frustrated with dealing with his all-out intensity and full-pad Sunday speed in a shoulder pad practice. He threw a punch at towering first-year guard Alex Redmond and later he and veteran center Russell Bodine ripped off the other’s helmet.

Brown welcomes Jerry to the Hall
Sometimes, you just never know. Jerry Jones has a party bus when his team goes on the road. Mike Brown’s idea of a party is taking the team bus to the game. Brown, owner of the Bengals, and Jones, owner of the Cowboys, are at the opposite ends of the NFL board room. Jones is inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame Thursday night because he introduced the corporate culture to the league that fueled its meteoric rise to the revered role of national past time at the turn of the century. All the while Brown saw the injection of business into the game as a threat to the existence of small markets where teams like his Bengals reside.

Bengals' Marvin Lewis: Carl Lawson is 'going to get unleashed'
Cincinnati Bengals rookie linebacker Carl Lawson couldn't help himself. Lawson, frustrated with center Russell Bodine in the heat of the moment, found himself pushing and shoving. Lawson's helmet had been ripped off during the play, and Bodine's helmet soon came off, too. Bengals coach Marvin Lewis, aware that practice had gotten heated among other players the day before, quickly put an end to it.

New Cincinnati Bengals DE Chris Smith making push for roster spot
The No. 94 jersey Cincinnati Bengals fans have grown used to seeing over the last decade is considerably smaller this season. And noticeably quicker. Chris Smith, the 6-foot-1, 266-pound defensive end the Bengals acquired in a trade with Jacksonville this offseason, has inherited the number worn by the 6-3, 325-pound Domata Peko for 11 seasons. But unlike Peko, who was a massive, run-stopping presence in the middle of the line, Smith has been using his speed to spend a lot of time in the backfield through the first week of camp.

AFC North Bytes

Ravens kicking the tires on Austin Howard
Austin Howard has plenty of interested after being released by the Raiders last week. According to Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun, the Ravens are hosting the free agent with an eye toward bolstering their thin offensive line.

David Njoku leaves practice with back injury
Rookie first round pick, tight end David Njoku was not on the practice field at the end of practice after leaving early with a back injury. “Yeah, he has a little back, something going on with his back," Hue Jackson said after practice. "We are working through that, but I think he will be fine.” Jackson was asked if he thought Njoku would play in the Orange & Brown scrimmage.

James Harrison Spends Roughly $300,000 a Year to Keep Body in Playing Shape
Any NFL player relies on his body to make a living. Many more athletes thus invest heavily on conditioning and recovery to stay in peak shape.'s Jeremy Fowler profiled the deep lengths some veterans take to prolong their careers. No case is more extreme than James Harrison, the 39-year-old Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker preparing for his 14th season.

Random Bytes

Ryan Tannehill of Miami Dolphins now feared to need surgery on knee
The Miami Dolphins now fear quarterback Ryan Tannehill will need season-ending knee surgery; however, no decision to have it has been made at this time, according to sources close to the situation. As second and third opinions await, Tannehill still could decide to rest the knee for six to eight weeks and try to come back from the injury again, sources said.

Politics the Only Thing Keeping Terrell Owens from His Rightful Place in Canton
It's Hall of Fame weekend. This year, like many before it, will be one of the most emotional and important moments of the NFL season. There will also be something missing. Actually, someone: Terrell Owens. That name is sure to evoke a variety of responses, from brawls on social media to endless screaming on television. Go ahead and brawl. Or scream. Or whatever.

Cowboys Hold Off Cardinals to Win 2017 Hall of Fame Game 20-18
Those hoping the 2017 Hall of Fame Game would feature Canton-worthy talent were probably a little disappointed. Those hoping the first football game of the 2017 NFL preseason would actually be a close football game, however, left Thursday night more than satisfied. The Dallas Cowboys held off a last-minute Arizona Cardinals drive to earn a 20-18 win in the year's preseason opener, coming back from a two-touchdown deficit in Canton, Ohio.