For the first time since Oct. 25 the Bengals started the same offensive line for the second week in a row, but it looks they'll have a different quarterback Sunday in Houston when they turn back to Brandon Allen.
Indications throughout the week have been that Allen gets the start after missing Monday night's win over the Steelers with a knee injury. After being limited on Wednesday he went full in practice Thursday and Friday, didn't appear on Friday's game status report and remained listed as the No. 1 quarterback in front of Ryan Finley.
Head coach Zac Taylor didn't name a starter, but he offered no surprises on the inactive sheet with leading receiver Tyler Boyd (concussion) as well as nickel linebacker Logan Wilson (ankle) and rotational linebacker Jordan Evans (hamstring) out.
Randy Bullock was inactive for the third straight game with Austin Seibert getting the kicking duties and the same three offensive linemen that were out against the Steelers (guards Alex Redmond, Keaton Sutherland and B.J. Finney) were out against the Texans.
Taylor said they were looking to keep the same offensive line that kept for the ball for 32 minutes on Monday night, meaning right tackle Bobby Hart and left tackle Fred Johnson would get the bulk of the looks against Texans defensive end J.J. Watt and his Hall of Fame resume.
Rookie linebacker Keandre Jones is expected to make his NFL debut at some point on special teams after being promoted from the practice squad. Also active for his potential season debut is practice squad wide receiver Trenton Irwin. He made his lone 2019 appearance in last season's finale.
The 6-3, 220-pound Jones was a college free agent signee of the Bears out of Maryland and when he was waived on Sept. 3 the Bengals picked him up two weeks later. He began his college career Ohio State from 2016-18.