Bengals training camp notes

July, 28, 2008
7/28/08
2:00
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker

 
 AP Photo/Al Behrman
 Quarterback Carson Palmer calls a play during the Bengals' first practice at training camp.

GEORGETOWN, Ky. -- Following an interesting offseason, the Cincinnati Bengals opened training camp Monday looking forward to getting back to football.

Here are some first-day observations from training camp:

  • In what's been par for the course for AFC North teams, the Bengals suffered their first injury of training camp in the opening practice when defensive end Antwan Odom went down with a foot injury. Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis didn't provide many specifics in his press conference.

"Antwan, they took in and they will do some scans and so forth on his foot and see what it is," Lewis said. "I have an idea what it is but we'll wait until we get something confirmed."

  • Pro Bowl receiver Chad Johnson was not cleared to practice following recent ankle surgery to remove bone spurs. The Bengals don't have a timetable at this juncture, but Johnson is struggling mostly with making cuts and stopping.

"What he's got going on right now with his body and his ankle is tough, but it's cool," teammate T.J. Houshmandzadeh said. "He will get better, and we will win some games."

  • Rookie linebacker Keith Rivers, the No. 9 overall pick in the draft, was the team's lone contract holdout as the team opened training camp Monday morning. Including Rivers, there are only three unsigned first-round draft picks remaining, and Cincinnati opened its 9 a.m. practice Monday with nine of its 10 draft picks total.

"They keep going back and forth a little bit," Lewis said. "It's a shame because I think Keith would benefit (from reporting on time)."

  • In what will be an interesting development to watch in training camp, Stacy Andrews spent a lot of time at right tackle working with the first-team in place of veteran Willie Anderson. Andrews played well last season and was given the franchise tag this year because of health concerns for Anderson.
  • The Bengals confirmed after the morning practice that fullback Jeremi Johnson was not cleared to practice because of weight and conditioning issues. Lewis was clear in saying that Jeremi Johnson is falling behind and in danger of not making the team.

"No question about it, he's battling for a spot on this football team," Lewis said. "Guys are asked to report at a certain level and be there. We gotta move forward. So we're going to move on and hope that he can catch up and earn a spot."

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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