Tag:Cincinnati Bengals
Posted on: July 28, 2011 5:58 pm
Edited on: July 29, 2011 9:48 am
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Ochocinco traded by Bengals to Patriots

Ochocinco, BelichickPosted by Josh Katzowitz

With the fan vitriol at a high level in Cincinnati and with his apparent feud with Bengals coach Marvin Lewis escalating, it make senses if WR Chad Ochocinco wanted to leave the city. And, for that matter, if the Bengals wanted him to leave.

Well, it’s happening.

According to Local 12’s Brad Johansen -- formerly the play-by-play announcer for the Bengals until he was unceremoniously dumped before the lockout -- Ochocinco has been traded to the Patriots for a draft pick.

According to the Cincinnati Enquirer’s Joe Reedy, Ochocinco’s contract had been renegotiated to a three-year deal before the deal was made.

The Bengals were slated to pay Ochocinco $6 million this year, but his skills declined last year, and with Terrell Owens in the same locker room, the two receivers weren’t very conducive to a cohesive team unit.

Ochocinco has been clamoring for a trade for the past few seasons. He finally has received his wish.

Considering the Redskins traded troubled DT Albert Haynesworth to the Patriots earlier today, you have to wonder how much ego New England coach Bill Belichick now will have to massage.

UPDATED 9:47 a.m.: As CBSSports.com's Clark Judge writes, the Patriots reportedly will send the Bengals a fifth-round pick in 2012 and a sixth-round pick in 2013.

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Posted on: July 28, 2011 2:32 pm
Edited on: July 28, 2011 11:15 pm
 

2011 NFL Draft rookie contracts coming in

Posted by Will Brinson

There's been plenty of action in free agency thus far (don't forget to follow it all in our live, updating Experience and with our 2011 NFL Free Agency Tracker!), but it also warrants mentioning that there have been a good number of first-round draft picks signed by various teams over the past few days.

Interestingly, many of these players who are signing have received fully guaranteed contracts, something you don't typically see with rookies, even though the total contracts, because of the new rookie wage system, are coming in lower than previous years.

For instance, the Cowboys signed Tyson Smith, their top pick, likely right tackle for 2011 and eventual successor to Doug Free, to a four-year, $12.5 million deal which is entirely guaranteed. By contrast, C.J. Spiller, taken in the same spot last season by the Bills, received a five-year, $25 million deal with $20.5 million guaranteed.

The Bengals signed Georgia wideout A.J. Green to a four-year, $19.6 million deal, all of which is also guaranteed, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer's Joe Reedy. (Trent Williams, by contrast, got $60 million with $36.5 guaranteed out of the No. 4 slot from the Redskins in 2010.)

The 49ers reported via Twitter that they've signed all their draft picks, including second-round quarterback Colin Kaepernick (four-year deal) and first-round defensive end Aldon Smith. Financials haven't been put out yet.

The same goes for the Buccaneers, who signed first- and second-round picks Adrian Clayborn and Da'Quan Bowers (deets on the monies aren't out yet last I checked).

In Denver, Von Miller is "expected" to sign a four-year, $21-million deal with the Broncos soon. He probably would have seen up to $50 million more (not all guaranteed, of course) under the old rookie salary system. The ironic part? He was a named plaintiff on the Brady v. NFL lawsuit. It's worth noting that Miller's not sweating losing any pile of money and says he "plans on getting three, four, five contracts."

[(UPDATED 4:47 p.m. ET): John Elway confirms the team has agreed to terms with Miller. Wrote Elway on his Twitter feed: "Can't wait to get him on the field."]

The final thing to remember as the first-year player contracts start to come in? There's a fifth-year team option built into these four-year deals, and that deal must be picked up by the end of the third year or else the amount owed balloons to an average of the top-10 salaries at the position.

If a player performs well in his first three seasons then, he stands to either get locked for a fifth year or find himself inked to a new contract sooner than he expected.

Everything's not all roses, though. Agent Jack Bechta writes at the National Football Post that some teams are utilizing dollars for later-round picks and allocating them towards first rounders. It's not happening often, at least right now, but Bechta cites it as a "disturbing trend" because it's something that could potentially create a false inflation system for first-round picks as agents try to get more money than the player drafted the previous year.

There's not telling how often that will happen going forward, but it's still a bit concerning as the rookies current wages are pushed back because of the new CBA.

On the bright side, if shifting salaries does happen, it's a lot less likely that JaMarcus Russell remains the biggest NFL Draft bust forever. So there's that.

UPDATED 7:48 p.m. ET: The Jaguars have announced that No. 10 overall pick, QB Blaine Gabbert, has signed his contract.

UPDATED 11:14 p.m. ET: No. 13 pick Nick Fairley has signed a four-year deal worth about $10 million with the Lions.

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Posted on: July 27, 2011 5:27 pm
 

Bengals to replace Palmer with Gradkowski

GradkowskiPosted by Josh Katzowitz

The past few months, we’ve paid quite a bit of attention to QB Carson Palmer and whether Bengals owner Mike Brown would trade him and get something of value for his estranged QB or if he’d let him retire.

Now that Brown has said he’d rather let Palmer rot in California than trade him (he said it a little nicer than that), the Bengals had to turn their attention to finding another veteran QB who can compete with rookie Andy Dalton for the starting spot.

As Rapid Reporter Paul Dehner writes, Cincinnati has agreed to terms on a two-year deal with former Raiders QB Bruce Gradkowski.

The move makes sense on a couple different levels.

1) When Gradkowski played in Tampa Bay, he worked with Jay Gruden, who’s now in charge of the Bengals offense. Their familiarity with each other certainly will help Gradkowski, particularly since Dalton hasn’t gotten any practice time in Gruden’s offense.

2) Gradkowski is a legit starting quarterback, compiling a 6-14 record in 20 starts (a third of those wins came against the Bengals!). Yes, that record is not impressive, but he’s the kind of guy that can provide some veteran leadership to help a young quarterback (you saw that a little bit last year in Oakland with Jason Campbell).

Either way, Gradkowski was so excited, he tweeted the following: “Bengal fans let’s get ready to rock and roll! Can’t wait for this great opportunity!”

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Posted on: July 26, 2011 1:15 pm
Edited on: July 26, 2011 2:39 pm
 

Brown on Carson Palmer: 'He has retired'

Posted by Will Brinson



Two of the biggest offseason storylines this year -- the actual lockout notwithstanding -- were the respective sagas of Carson Palmer and Kevin Kolb, both quarterbacks under team control through 2011.

Kolb appears to be moving on via trade (though as Clark Judge noted, it's not "imminent") and it sure does look like Palmer's gone too -- Bengals owner Mike Brown reiterated on Tuesday that he is absolutely not going to bother trying to get anything of value of Palmer and will instead let him ride off into a youthful millionaire's sunset.

"I honesty like Carson Palmer. He was a splendid player for us," Brown said, via Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer. "He is a good person. I wish him well and he has retired. That is his choice."
End of the Line for Palmer?

Yes. Yes it technically is Palmer's choice. And there's an argument to be made that Palmer is shirking his commitment. Mike Brown is making that argument.

"I'm not expecting him to be back. Carson signed a contract, he made a commitment," Brown continued. "He gave us his word. We relied on his word and his commitment. We expected him to perform here. If he is going to walk away from his commitment we aren’t going to reward him for doing it."

That is a very firm stance to take in this situation.

Unfortunately, it doesn't really qualify as "impressively strong" or "morally inflexible."

Instead, it's probably closer to "stupidly stubborn." If the Bengals traded Palmer -- and they absolutely could trade Palmer and get good value for him at this stage of things -- would the Bengals be harmed in any particular way?

No, no they would not, because they would acquire something in return for Palmer that would benefit the organization -- and the fans! -- over the long term.

Instead, they're going to let Palmer just walk away because he's sick of playing for the organization that treats its employees -- and its fans! -- in this way despite having just gotten through the longest work stoppage in history?

Yes, that's a much smarter move than trying to build for the future.

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Posted on: July 23, 2011 12:18 pm
Edited on: July 23, 2011 12:45 pm
 

Bengals TE says 'people have started to cool off'

Posted by Ryan Wilson

When Roger Goodell announced during a Thursday press conference that the owners had voted 31-0 on a proposed settlement to end the lockout, the jubilation -- and the sense of relief that accompanied it -- was palpable. It was also fleeting.

In the hours after Goodell's announcement, many players said they felt blindsided. Some called the owners "arrogant" and their proposal a "power play." Still, there was optimism that the lockout wouldn't drag on much longer.

"We are going to get a deal done," Jaguars linebacker Kirk Morrison said late Thursday night.

Bengals tight end Reggie Kelly, an alternate player representative, sounded equally upbeat, though he recognized that players were initially concerned.

"I think guys at first were angry [Thursday] because the first time we heard about the proposal was on TV when they voted on it," said Kelly, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer's Joe Reedy. "You need to negotiate and do it the right way.

"People have started to cool off. It's not about egos and personal feelings. It's a business. All in all it's going to work out and we're going to be ready to play."

In related Bengals-lockout news, the organization emailed season-ticket holders Thursday announcing that the lockout was over. We applaud the the team's confidence, although its credibility takes a hit when you read sentences like this: "This year — like others before it — we will focus our energies on returning to the Super Bowl again."

Shutdown Corner's Doug Farrar sums it up nicely. "The fact that the Bengals' organization (long known as one of the league's most parsimonious and least competent, though we certainly don't include Marvin Lewis in that equation) is out there with this one will just provide a bit of comic relief in what has been a very arduous and unnecessarily dramatic process."

So, yes, thanks again for the laughs, Cincinnati.

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Posted on: July 22, 2011 9:12 am
Edited on: July 22, 2011 9:43 am
 

Alleged victim says Benson attack was 'violent'

Posted by Ryan Wilson

Bengals running back Cedric Benson was arrested last weekend on assault charges after a former roommate accused Benson of roughing him up on an Austin, Texas, street corner. It wasn't Benson's first run-in with the law, and if nothing else, allowed for another "The Bengals lead the league in arrests" posts.

But according to Benson's attorneys, the alleged victim was trying to extort money from their client.

"Thomas Crosley, the attorney for Clavens 'Miami' Charles, the individual involved in the incident with Cedric Benson this weekend, contacted us yesterday to demand a 'settlement' meeting," Benson's attorneys said in a statement released Thursday. "This attorney stated that if we did not respond within a short period, Mr. Charles would respond to media requests, including a request for an interview from TMZ. We have learned that Mr. Charles’ representatives have contacted at least one public relations firm to assist them with publicity."

Benson's attorneys said that not only is there "nothing to settle with Charles," but that they "intend to confront Charles in defending the misdemeanor charges against Cedric. Cedric did not act without provocation."

By Friday morning, PFT had received a statement from Charles' attorney which, surprisingly, denied the extortion charges leveled by Benson's attorneys (if we've learned anything it's this: lawyers are remarkably proficient at gumming things up):

“Earlier this week Clavens Charles was the victim of an unprovoked violent assault by Cedric Benson that resulted in his hospitalization,” the attorney’s statement said. “Today Clavens Charles has been the victim of an equally violent media smear campaign by the attorneys representing Cedric Benson. . . . No money demand was ever made to Cedric Benson or his legal counsel. Money was never mentioned by us at any time.”

We have no idea where the truth lies, but as PFT's Michael David Smith notes, this photo of Charles in the hospital sure makes it look as if he was the victim of a violent crime.

Whatever happens, Benson will be a free agent once the lockout ends, and his latest arrest could affect his NFL future.

(Which again raises the philosophical question: Do the Bengals attract players who struggle to work within the confines of the law or are those players corrupted once they're Bengals?)

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Posted on: July 21, 2011 5:21 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 5:30 pm
 

Ochocinco gets pulled over by cops, tweets it

Posted by Ryan Wilson

We may still be without football but Bengals wide receiver Chad Ochocinco has been plenty busy this offseason.

If you've been out of the loop, Eye on Football colleague Will Brinson provides the Cliffs Notes: "Let's see here … *flips through file* … he's ridden bulls, he's reportedly lost his work ethic, he's scouted incoming rookies, he's threatened to change his name (again), he's promised to wrestle alligators, he's tried out for an MLS team, he's -- ah, here we go."

And that was before Ochocinco threatened to whup Marvin Lewis' ass and took a NASCAR joyride.

So it's not altogether surprising that Ochocinco is again in the news, and it's news solely because he tweeted it. On Thursday, Chad was pulled over by Cincinnati police for having his windows too darkly tinted.



It was with some hesitation that we wrote about this given how Ochocinco responded to Yahoo's coverage. But since we're still waiting for actual football, and this is tangentially related to the NFL, we took a chance.

Plus, we love Chad.

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Posted on: July 21, 2011 10:20 am
Edited on: July 21, 2011 10:27 am
 

Owners will likely vote on CBA today

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

ATLANTA -- As owners have nearly finished entering the Gateway Marriott hotel for today’s 10 a.m. meeting, the vibe of the owners and their team executives is that a vote to ratify the CBA will likely occur today.

Even if the players don’t vote themselves.

“I think so,” Katie Blackburn, Bengals executive vice president, told CBSSports.com and Cincinnati's WKRC-TV. “We’ll go in there and hear what they have to say. But there could be (a vote).”

It makes sense if the owners are to vote on the labor deal, if only to put the onus on the NFLPA to finish the deal and send the agreement to the Brady v NFL plaintiffs. And though the Bengals could very well vote no on the new CBA -- as owner Mike Brown did in 2006 -- it seems pretty clear that most of the owners will give their approval to the new deal.

“I’m neutral going in,” Blackburn said. “I’m going in there to see what happens.”

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com