BY GEOFF HOBSON
IRVING, Texas _ In pre-game planning Sunday morning, the Bengals leaned to giving second-year fullback Nick Williams his first NFL start here against the Cowboys.
Williams still might not get the nod if the Bengals choose to start running back Corey Dillon alone in the backfield behind a double tight end set.
But incumbent starter Clif Groce's sprained knee ligament is apparently still not 100 percent after he missed the last two games.
Williams and Groce probably will rotate as the Bengals try to pound the running game against a Dallas rush defense ranked last in the NFL.
The Bengals hope the return of two blockers gives Dillon a shot against the Cowboys. Center Rich Braham is back for the first time since aggravating a sore knee after the second game. Left tackle John Jackson returns to the starting lineup after missing last week's game with a pulled hamstring.
Sunday's conditions certainly called for the running game. A steady rain stopped just before kickoff and temperatures were hanging in the mid-50s.
Along with emergency quarterback Scott Covington, the Bengals deactivated running back Curtis Keaton and offensive lineman Scott Rehberg before the game.
In other club news Sunday, agent Marvin Demoff confirmed Dillon has ended his relationship with him. Dillon is a free agent after the season, but he has yet to reveal the name of his new representative.