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Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Morning Stripes: Meeting Matt Burke

By Coley Harvey

Newest Cincinnati Bengals assistant Matt Burke spent little time getting acclimated with his new city before booking it out of town for a week on the much warmer Gulf Coast.

Just a day after being announced as the Bengals' new linebackers coach, the former Detroit Lions assistant was on a plane with the rest of Cincinnati's coaching staff, headed to Mobile, Ala., for the annual late-January Senior Bowl. On Monday, the entire crew joined representatives from the other 31 teams and watched the first day of practices ahead of Saturday's all-star game.

Apparently the quick transition has given Burke little time to get acclimated to tweaking his pronoun usage. While talking to Bengals.com earlier this week about his arrival to Cincinnati, Burke said that while he was at Detroit, he and other coaches there "looked at a lot of their film this year." He was referring to the Bengals. Then he must have caught himself because he rephrased: "I guess I should start saying, 'our film.'"

Unlike the two offseason hires previous to his, don't expect Burke to hold an introductory news conference when he finally gets back to Cincinnati. The comments he makes to those attending this week's Senior Bowl will be the way he introduces himself to Bengals fans.

Burke says his style of defense is aggressive, attacking and "up-tempo." He likes blitzing his linebackers and he likes using them in very much the same capacity new Bengals defensive coordinator Paul Guenther did when he was in charge of linebackers, Burke added. So don't be surprised if the Bengals' linebackers next season -- all of whom, free agent Vincent Rey included, are expected to be back -- look a lot like what they did this past one.

We start this Tuesday edition of the Morning Stripes by taking a look at Burke, the latest piece on this rapidly evolving and shifting roster: