Bengals head coach Zac Taylor said what everybody knew before Wednesday's practice and made fourth-round pick Cordell Volson the Opening Day left guard, an appointment in 11 days against the Steelers at Paycor Stadium.
He's the first rookie offensive lineman to start for the Bengals on Opening Day since Taylor's first game when 2019 fourth-rounder Michael Jordan got the nod at left guard.
"Consistent growth. He improves every day," Taylor said. "He takes the teachings and really fights to work on it each day. There's a consistency there that we know what we're getting."
Quarterback Joe Burrow is just fine with it.
"He's a big North Dakota boy that is fun to play with. High energy," Burrow said. "He's in his playbook, you can tell. Knows his stuff so he's going to keep getting better and better."
_The soap opera "As the Who Dey Roster Turns," kept spinning into practice after Taylor confirmed the Bengals claimed three players waiver a day after final cuts.
It was an aggressive salary cap move with guard Max Scharping a 2019 second-round pick of the Texans, tight end Devin Asiasi a 2020 third-round pick of the Patriots and defensive tackle Jay Tufele a 2021 fourth-round pick of the Jaguars. Players are claimed with their current contracts.
_Just from eyeballing practice, the Bengals looked to be making room for the three by making moves with vested veterans they can bring back Thursday after putting players on injured reserve. Not on the field were No. 2 quarterback Brandon Allen and No. 1 personal punt protector Michael Thomas, two guys in their plans. On Tuesday, Taylor said the Bengals were looking to re-sign wide receiver Michael Thomas and those guys look to be in the same category.
Also not on the field was running back Trayveon Williams, one of four backs that made the cut Tuesday at a position they have recently kept three.
_Also eyeballing practice for the practiced squad, expected to be formally announced after Wednesday's practice. Drue Chrisman was on the field after losing the punting job to Kevin Huber.
Also on the field and apparent practice squad members:
Quarterback Jake Browning, long snapper Cal Adomitis and wide receivers Kwamie Lassitter II and Trenton Irwin. Taylor joked that he yelled at his brother, Jaguars offensive coordinator Press Taylor, after Jacksonville claimed rookie receiver Kendric Pryor, the Bengals' leading preseason receiver.
Guard Nate Gilliam, linebacker Keandre Jones and tight end Thaddeus Moss were also on the field and tackle Devin Cochran was riding a bike.
_Reports had the Bengals signing former Bills tight end O.J Howard once he passed a physical, but Taylor said he didn't expect any more transactions Wednesday after they claimed Asiasi.
"There's some good routes he puts on tape. I'm not going to pigeon-hole him as a blocking tight end, but he's a big guy (257 pounds)," Taylor said. "He's one of the bigger tight ends. There's a presence that he can bring there in the run game and in protections. At the same time, there's some good stuff as a route runner on tape that lets you know he can do that as well."
_The Bengals have a bevy of injured reserve candidates for Thursday. Taylor has already said cornerback Cam Taylor-Britt (core) and edge Khalid Kareem (hamstring) are going on the list and there's also potentially tackle Isaiah Prince, tight end Mitchell Wilcox and safety Tycen Anderson.