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Camp report: Dalton sharp in pocket

Andy Dalton: a sharp 11-for-13, thanks to the O-line
Andy Dalton: a sharp 11-for-13, thanks to the O-line

PLAYER OF THE DAY: In front of a Friday afternoon crowd of 1,050 that disappeared into the Cincinnati Musical Festival crowd after practice, Andy Dalton put on a passing clinic that highlighted how Bengals offensive coordinator Bill Lazor wants to use and protect his quarterback. With no interior linemen getting pushed back into his lap and the rest of the offensive line alertly picking up the stunts for the most part after they were dogged by them Thursday, Dalton had a clear view of the field for a leisurely game of darts in which he completed 11 of 13 passes.

"They're doing well up front. We'll see what happens when we put the pads on tomorrow," Dalton said. "It wasn't the deep throws down the field today (like it was Thursday), but it was consistent. Nothing flashy. That's the way camp is. You have different installs in. Yesterday we took some shots. We may not have been trying to on some, but it just happened with the looks we got. That's how camp goes."

The nice spacing the line has been giving Dalton to form the pocket on his quick drops has been a bit of a topic. New offensive line coach Frank Pollack is getting kudos for having his linemen jump on rushers at the snap instead of retreating to cut off angles. It also at times cut off Dalton's vision.

"I think we're still learning. We're getting on guys quickly," said left guard Clint Boling. "As we develop the new techniques, we'll continue to grow. Still trying to get better and we're still trying to find out who is going to play for us."

Boling, left tackle Cordy Glenn and center Billy Price have been mainstays the past two days, but Pollack is running guys through on the right side. Guard Alex Redmond and tackle Bobby Hart worked with the ones before guard Trey Hopkins and tackle Cedric Ogbuehi took over. Jake Fisher, who was with the ones on Wednesday, was with the twos Thursday and with one backup group both he and Ogbuehi were at tackle. Hart worked with the twos Thursday before getting the call Friday.

Pollack agreed. It's a blank slate over there with no timeline. And he thought Price had a better day Friday than Thursday. It didn't look like he had problems with the snaps under center, but did fly one shot-gun snap over Dalton's head.

"Unacceptable. One is too many," Pollack said. "He understands that. I Iike his approach. That's why we drafted him. He came out here today and made an improvement."

PLAY OF THE DAY: Wide receiver Alex Erickson and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick both caught quarterback Matt Barkley's low and outside fast ball on an option route and wouldn't let go for what looked to be nearly a good 30 seconds as they wrestled on the grass. Long enough that Jackson pulled Erickson's ankles trying to get him off Kirkpatrick. Finally head coach Marvin Lewis told Erickson to get off him. Erickson said he thought Lewis told him the tie goes to the offense. But he also told Kirkpatrick it was his completion.

"It probably would have went until one of us passed out or something," Erickson said of what would have happened if Lewis didn't call it off. "We were telling each other good play, way to compete. It's one of those good plays by everybody. I get better, he gets better, we all get better."

QUOTE OF THE DAY: "It's not me that's going to decide. I don't decide crap. These guys decide who is going to play. It will take as long as it takes." Pollack on the battles at right guard and right tackle.

SLANTS AND SCREENS: Everybody who sat out Thursday sat out Friday. Backup cornerback Tony McRae got carted off with an ankle injury they were hoping wasn't serious ...

Second-year linebacker Hardy Nickerson came up with an athletic interception off a Jeff Driskel pass headed for Erickson over the middle. Nickerson tipped it in the air as he flashed across safety George Iloka and then on the rebound dove and made a juggling catch ....

Rookie safety Jessie Bates rotated through with the ones as he gets ready to prove he can hit. His first chance comes Saturday when they wear shoulder pads and then full pads Sunday and Monday ...

Don't forget Christian Westerman in the mix at right guard. A virus has sapped him of 12 pounds but he's hoping to be back Monday. With rookie Rod Taylor feared lost with a knee injury, Tackle Kent Perkins moved inside some ...

Dalton's two incompletions came when WILL backer Jordan Evans blitzed untouched and batted it away and when Will Jackson was draped all over Green on a sideline route, Dalton overthrew him. Jackson, who always seems to put on a show, made hellacious back-to-back plays in seven-on-seven. The first came when he reached over Green's shoulder on a side-line route and tipped a sure completion at the last instant. Then when wide receiver Josh Malone looked like he was about to easily haul in a bomb, one of Jackson's Inspector Gadget arms came out of nowhere to break it up ...

Wide receiver John Ross put an eye-popping double move on Kirkpatrick in one-on-one and was long gone before Kirkpatrick recovered ...

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