As the QBs turn

Posted: 5:50 p.m.

The Bengals found out just how tough it is to secure a quarterback willing to sit behind a Pro Bowler Friday when the Redskins traded former No. 1 pick Patrick Ramsey to the Jets for just a sixth-round pick.

At least one published report linked the Bengals to trade talks with the Redskins, but it's believed that Ramsey preferred the situation in New York rather than Cincinnati because he's got a chance to win the starting job.

The Bengals seek a one-year stop gap for insurance as Carson Palmer recovers from reconstructive knee surgery and are checking out the progress of former Tampa Bay quarterback Brian Griese's own knee surgery this weekend.

Beyond Griese and Jamie Martin, the Bengals could eye Joey Harrington once the Lions release him. Now that it appears that Griese is no longer in Tampa's plans, Tim Rattay is probably no longer a trade option.

Gus Frerrote and Josh McCown also weren't interested in backing up Palmer. And Mason Ashe, the agent for Aaron Brooks, said Friday he isn't looking to bring his client into this kind of situation.

It also appears the Bengals haven't called on Jay Fiedler or Tommy Maddox. Tony Banks has expressed an interest, but agent Marvin Demoff said as of Friday the Bengals hadn't called.

Harrington shares Palmer's agent, David Dunn, but it doesn't look like it would be a good fit. The high-profile Harrington was the NFL draft's third pick in 2002 and still feels he can be someone's franchise quarterback. The understated Palmer already is, and was the No. 1 overall pick only one draft removed from Harrington.

While the Bengals were wrapped up in the quarterback situation Friday, the NFL Network reported they are monitoring virtually every visit of Pro Bowl linebacker LaVar Arrington. But there are no indications that the Bengals have extended a visit themselves or had any contract talks with agent Kevin Poston and it's doubtful they will until his price comes down. But he does have the ear of Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis, his defensive coordinator for a season in Washington.

As Packers punt returner/wide receiver Antonio Chatman took a visit Friday at Paul Brown Stadium, the conventional wisdom is that the Bengals won't match a deal for wide receiver and special teams ace Kevin Walter even if they don't agree to terms with Chatman. Walter has pocketed a $1.5 million annual contract for four seasons from the Texans, and the Bengals have to make a call this weekend.

Mark Mersel, Chatman's agent, said his client is scheduled to visit Seattle on Monday.

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