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Bengals Notebook: NFL's Longest-Tenured Teammates Meet Sunday; QBs Try To Jeopardize A-Rod's 195th start 

LS Clark Harris at practice at Paul Brown Stadium.
LS Clark Harris at practice at Paul Brown Stadium.

Kevin Huber and Clark Harris, who seem to be the only punter and long snapper the Bengals have ever had, suit up for their 186th game as teammates Sunday (1 p.m.-Cincinnati's Channel 19) against the Packers at Paul Brown Stadium.

According to Elias, the only other pair of teammates currently in the NFL that have been together longer than those 13 seasons are on the other sidelines in the person of Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers and kicker Mason Crosby in their 15th year together.

You might say opposites attract. Huber, 36, is Cincinnati all the way, from high school, college to the pros. Harris, 37, is Jersey Shore.

A free spirit?

"OK, call it that," says Harris, the acerbic East Coaster.

Huber a little more buttoned down?

"I wouldn't say that," says Huber with wit as dry Midwestern wheat. "I'm just not as much of an outspoken free spirit like Clark."

There are the two games Huber missed at the end of the 2013 season when the Steelers broke his jaw and there are the three games Harris missed with a groin injury during the 2016 season.

That's it. Since the Bengal picked up Harris in time for the sixth game of Huber's rookie year in 2009 (the 12th anniversary is next week), Harris has been snapping it to Huber as a punter and holder.

A lot has happened in 13 years. Huber has seen Harris become a dad and Harris has watched Huber get married.

"Best wedding I've ever been too," Harris says.

"I don't think he actually saw it," Huber says.

"I saw the wedding," Harris says. "The reception is a little fuzzy."

Maybe opposites, but they've been in sync enough to be one of the Bengals' consistent strengths down through the years. According to the Bengals, Harris has never delivered an unplayable snap in 1,733 tries.

"Never," Harris says. "High school. College."

"Clark is the greatest there ever was and the greatest there will ever be," says Huber with enough deadpan to get Harris laughing.

Seriously folks, these guys are good at what they do.

"I'm sure he's turned some of my unplayables into playables. He's kept my streak alive," Harris says. "We say he's a Gold Glove winner. You should write a story about how good of a holder he is. If they're a little high or a little on the back end, he makes it look smooth. Even if it's not the best snap it still looks like it was fine. He gets the laces down and all that. Best I've been around."

Huber has had a resurgence hitting the ball the last couple of years and part of the credit, he says, is the stability with Harris.

"It's been nice to have that," Huber says. "You see so much turnover in the league down through the years and keeping it together keeps the operation smooth."

Harris, who on Sunday passes franchise icon Tim Krumrie into fifth place on the Bengals all-time games list with 189, likes the atmosphere at the office and he says rookie kicker Evan McPherson fits right in.

"I like that we can mess around, have fun and then when our period comes around (in practice), we're focused and we do our job and we do what we do on game day and it's fun to be able to do that," Harris says. "I like we can do that on game day. I don't like it when you're robotic and you can't talk or mess around and you have to be super focused. You have to be yourself and when the time comes to do your job and get on the field, you get focused."

That's why Harris and Huber like McPherson, the 22-year-old rage who has won two games on the last play with a field goal.

"Evan is the same way," says Harris, recalling how McPherson followed up his first NFL miss with the winner over Jacksonville. "He kind of hangs out. After he missed it, you couldn't even tell. He just went about his day and did everything exactly the same and came through."

Coming into the season in their 181 games together, Harris had snapped to Huber at the gun to win five games. With McPherson, they added two more in 18 days.

"It's probably helped Evan more than anybody," says Harris of the 13 years of experience that is still on hold.

PLAYING JEOPARDY: The Bengals host the second-most famous Jeopardy game show host in history when Rodgers makes his 195th start Sunday and second at The Paul.

But Rodgers won't make the list of questions Bengals assistant wide receivers coach Brad Kragthorpe starts crafting Friday for the Bengals' version of Quarterbacks Jeopardy that takes place in their hotel the night before the game.

"If we ask a question about the other team," Kragthorpe says, "it's about the defensive personnel."

Maybe Rodgers, who had a very impressive tryout to be the next Jeopardy host this past offseason, makes the non-football questions list. Kragthorpe usually mixes in a couple of questions about popular culture or geography in there (Rodgers played his college ball at Cal could be one), but he says Bengals head coach Zac Taylor usually gets those.

"Zac usually gets the tough ones," Kragthorpe says.

Offensive coordinator Brian Callahan, looking for his first win this year, is one of the participants, along with Taylor, quarterbacks coach Dan Pitcher and his three quarterbacks, Joe Burrow, Brandon Allen and practice squadder Jake Browning.

"It's a fun night before the game review tool. Not really mundane," Callahan says. "It's one more run through most of the things you're going to encounter in the game you're going to play the next day. It's a way to cap the week to see how good you are with the game plan."

Kragthorpe says he's a fan of the show, although not as big as the guy in the office next door, defensive quality control coach Jordan Kovacs, and he catches it on Netflix. He saw one episode with Rodgers and says he was good.

It's not exactly like Jeopardy, but Kragthorpe does assign value to the questions ranging from 100 for the easiest to 500 for the hardest.

"We rotate who gets the question. They pick a question and a point value," Kragthorpe says. "We have a system where somebody can steal a question (if it isn't answered) that they know the answer and they can get the points."

Callahan says Taylor or Burrow win most of the time. And he says the 500-pointers are legitimately tough.

"You have six plays out of this formation. What are all six plays and call them perfectly. Without looking at the play sheet, that's tough," Callahan says.

The night before playing the Jaguars, a game that would be decided on the offense's ability to respond to a zero blitz, Kragthorpe did have a zero blitz kind of question.

"It had to do with their coordinator having zero blitz in his background and to be ready for it," Kragthorpe says.

Kragthorpe can't remember who got it right. But they got it right. And then they got it right 24 hours later, too. On Sunday, they'd like to have more answers than the guy who one day may be the Jeopardy host.

INJURY UPDATE: Cornerback Trae Waynes surfaced on the injury report after practice and was listed as limited. Waynes played for the first time this season last week against the Jags after missing the first three games with a hamstring injury. He had gone full Wednesday.

Center Trey Hopkins (knee) didn't practice for the second straight day. Head coach Zac Taylor didn't indicate concern about him earlier in the week. The next man up at that spot is rookie Trey Hill. Wide receiver Tee Higgins (shoulder) and cornerback Chidobe Awuzie (groin) went limited for the second straight day, following the optimistic track Taylor set out earlier in the week for them being available Sunday.

He'll know more about running back Joe Mixon (ankle) after Friday's practice. After keeping Mixon out Wednesday and Thursday, Taylor was going to see if he can go in the morning practice.