The Bengals gave everyone an inside look into the organization on the first go around with HBO’s Hard Knocks in 2009, they
enjoyed it enough to invited the series back in 2013. Having missed the first two episodes I caught up this weekend and will recap episode 2 since episode 1 was nearly two weeks ago.
Cincinnati is headed south in episode 2 as the Bengals travel to Atlanta to practice and take on the Atlanta Falcons, before they leave though they must practice.
We start off with a visit to the training room where Quarterback Andy Dalton checks up on his “baby” #1 wide receiver AJ Green, after being heckled he checks up on big man Andrew Whitworth as well.
During practice that day Dalton is nearly hurt after rookie defensive end DeQuin Evans took him down. You should never touch the quarterback in practice and you should never tackle him. To be fair to DQ he was shoved into Dalton.
John Skelton was the focus of a few minutes, not because of his great play but rather his inability to remember plays and what to call. One interesting thing is he bikes to PBS, if you’re in the area some morning look for him on his mountain bike. Jay Gruden grows increasingly frustrated with Skelton throughout practice.
On the other hand Josh Johnson knows all the plays at least the terminology. He needs accuracy though, Marvin Lewis makes the comment “I’ve never seen so many incomplete passes in my life” when talking about Johnson. In the game though Johnson did redeem himself.
Margus Hunt the rookie DE out of SMU is also very featured in the episode. Mike Zimmer rouses Hunt about his inability to understand english even though he speaks great english. Zimmer also compared Hunt to JJ Watt, not as the next Watt but just the way he plays. Hunt has a huge upside and the Bengals are hoping to tap into that.
The full back battle is a hot topic the past week. Seasoned veteran John Connor “terminator” has the most experience and is one hard hitting SOB. Yet the Bengals have Orson Charles a former tight end listed first on the depth chart. That will be an interesting battle to see play out.
After practice in Cincinnati the Bengals head south to Atlanta. Where they practice in an abandoned field filled with ants and snake holes. From there they practice at the Falcons facility. Only note worthy point from practice was second year lineback Vontaze Burfict got into a bit of a scuffle that he did not start.
James Harrison is a bad man, not in a bad way. He is just one scary man.
Best line of the episode goes to Adam Jones “I never had a problem getting a girl” if you know anything about Jones its a humorous line.
You can catch episode 3 Tuesday at 10pm on HBO.