As big as Monday night's win over the Pittsburgh Steelers was for the Cincinnati Bengals, it may have come at a cost. The contest was a physical one that had the training rooms working overtime as players constantly checked in and occasionally checked out to return to action on the field.
One Bengals player who went in for evaluations during the second half of the 20-10 win was defensive end Robert Geathers. Injured as he helped fellow end Carlos Dunlap wrap up Steelers receiver Jerricho Cotchery behind the line of scrimmage, Geathers appeared to take some friendly fire from teammate Reggie Nelson who also came in late to assist with the hit.
As you'll see in the morning stripes below, there appears to be a thought that Geathers' injury is more serious than maybe previously believed:
Even though Geathers missed the rest of the game with what was officially announced as an elbow injury, Bengals.com's Geoff Hobson is reporting that there is some anxiety in the Bengals camp as to just how long the key reserve lineman could be out. Early indicators are that the arm injury could affect the rest of Geathers' season. Whether Geathers ends up getting lost for the rest of the season or not, his injury may have set into motion of series of roster moves that could transpire this week. Once running back Bernard Scott's contract was terminated Monday and he was taken off the Bengals' physically unable to perform list, their options for some changes opened up. Among their options includes bringing back safety Jeromy Miles who was waived Monday and who has reportedly cleared waivers, Hobson reported.
The SBNation.com-affiliated blog CincyJungle.com has a full rundown of the injuries that occurred in Monday night's game. The breakdown includes players who returned to action after getting treatment for cramps and being cleared following possible concussions. As you can see, the contest was another typically physical AFC North battle. Even though it's not a divisional game, expect another this week when the Green Bay Packers come to Cincinnati.
Going back to Bengals.com, Hobson and Bengals radio analyst Dave Lapham caught up Monday night with former Bengals quarterback Boomer Esiason. The current network television NFL analyst let them know how excited he was about current Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, and how he doesn't see this as a make-or-break year for him. Dalton, after all, has been to the playoffs in his first two seasons. Esiason said he knows all too well how difficult that is for a quarterback in this franchise. Interestingly, Dalton, Esiason and Carson Palmer all had 20-14 records after their first 34 career regular-season games. Dalton's 35th is this Sunday.
If you took one look at the box score from Cincinnati's big win and looked specifically at the rushing yards for both teams, you may have assumed Pittsburgh had held the edge in the 127-44 tally. You would have been wrong, Cincinnati Enquirer beat reporter Joe Reedy writes. On one of the biggest stages this group of Marvin Lewis' troops have played on, they beat the Steelers at their own game. Part of it was Cincinnati's sudden success in running the ball. Another part was a stout defense preventing the Steelers' backs from ripping off the big gains rushers in the organization have come to have in the past.
Speaking of the word "stout," it was used by Bengals linebacker James Harrison when he described the way much of the rest of the defense played -- he only appeared in 14 plays -- against Pittsburgh. All week, Harrison's matchup against his old team dominated storylines, but when it came to him actually playing against it, there was little to report. Still, as Fox Sports Ohio's Kevin Goheen writes, there was plenty the rest of the defense did that was worth discussing.