ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. - Time for a nickname for Bengals rookie tight end
How about “The Real Deal”?
Or maybe “Jumping Jermaine” after the slam dunk celebration following his first NFL touchdown Saturday night that opened the scoring of the Bengals’ 35-20 loss to the Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium.
After his four catches for 45 yards, Gresham has 10 catches for 116 yards for an 11.6 average. The Bengals have had a tight end with at least 10 catches in the regular season get that much per catch only once in Marvin Lewis’ seven seasons and that was
The club is concerned with Gresham's mental errors, but it also loves the way he plays 100 miles an hour and he nearly saved the second series with a big dive for the first down on third-and-15, but his knee barely touched a yard shy.
But Gresham did back up the second touchdown drive when he flinched on the Bills 1 and he had a holding call that blew up a series late in the second quarter when it negated backup quarterback J.T. O’Sullivan’s 12-yard pass to wide receiver
“He did some good things; he still makes errors,” Bratkowski said. “He made some critical mistakes tonight, but they seem to be diminishing.”
Gresham is a good fit for the up-tempo style.
“I like it,” he said of the no-huddle. “I came from a school that did a lot of it at Oklahoma. We came out and caught the defense off-guard. It worked out very well."
PENALTY PLAY: The Bengals were one of the most penalized teams in the NFL last season and the trend has continued. They came into the game averaging nearly 10 penalties per game and now they are averaging more than 10 in the preseason after racking up 12 for 122 yards against the Bills.
But Lewis was adamant it won’t keep happening. The two flags that apparently disturbed him were a personal foul on left end Jon Fanene and a holding call on left guard
“More concerning is who does it than what it is,” Lewis said. “I don’t know what happened on Fanene’s personal foul. That’s a guy we know is going to be playing for us. The other thing is we overwhelm a guy and we get a holding call so we have to look at that and why. We know these things get cleaned up during the season and they’re not called because the officials are getting graded on this as well. And I know that’s the kind of thing people are kind of looking at now. They’re kind of overdoing that, but we have to learn from it and go forward. But I think those are the only two offensively and defensively with guys that mattered.”
That may not bode well for a guy like safety
The Bengals did have other starters make miscues. They’ve had more pass interference calls than usual and cornerback
ZIMMER STOIC: Hard to get a read on defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer after his guys got raked by rookie running back C.J. Spiller in the first half for 52 yards on 12 carries and two catches for 33 yards. One was a 20-yard touchdown run (a missed tackle by White was involved) and one was a 26-yard catch on a screen.
But when the first defense was in there, they dumped Spiller for losses of 11 and seven yards. The Bengals already had three defensive linemen that didn’t dress (
"We're not very good," Zimmer said. "We had three or four defensive linemen not dressed; no safeties. It's all right; we'll play them in November."
Asked if he was more vanilla than usual because the Bengals play the Bills later in the season, Zimmer said, "We'll see."
“Too many mental mistakes,” he said. “Mental mistakes lead to tragedy.”
SLANTS AND SCREENS
» Long-time Bengals radio analyst Dave Lapham told cornerback
On Saturday, Jones opened the game with a 51-yard kick return, added a 39-yarder on the next one and swiveled for 11 yards on a punt with a sweet hesitation move.
And talk about tough. He played most of the game at cornerback, went step-for-step with Evans (one of the fastest guys in the loop) to force an incomplete fly pattern, injured his knee, came back and left for good with a neck problem. There was no word how serious it was.
If the kicking derby was even, where is it now? Nugent probably has the edge but it is close.
He had the best night of any receiver in the preseaon Saturday with four catches for 82 yards, one a 44-yarder from
Meanwhile, Jones caught one ball for 12 yards and Simpson had one catch for six.
» Rookie cornerback