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Marvin Lewis Press Conference


Opening comments:ML:
We'll get started as usual with the injuries. The guys from yesterday are: Rich Braham with a deep knee bruise, Dexter Jackson with a sprained ankle, and David Pollack has a neck injury that last night they were able to stabilize. He is up and around, but he is in a protective halo that he will be wearing for a few weeks for sure, quite a few weeks actually. But he is up and running around, being David. At some point this week he will be placed on IR (Injured Reserve) and go from there.

He'll be released from the hospital and be able to go home and be with his family. He'll be around here as quickly as he can, which will probably be by the end of the week. He was up and being himself yesterday after he got hurt, listening to the game. Once they were able to put him in the halo he was able to watch TV and watch the games. He's an amazing guy. It's a shame that it happened and we'll make the best of it. Hopefully he'll be able to come back and not miss a beat and be a good learning experience for him this year.

Otherwise, A.J. Nicholson may be limited with a hamstring injury this week. Antonio Chatman is getting better, so we'll se where he is come Wednesday. Tab Perry has a hip injury, so we'll se where he is with that on Wednesday. (T.J.) Houshmandzadeh continues to get better and again on Wednesday we'll give you an indication of where he is. Levi Jones who also was injured last week and missed this game, is a lot better and hopefully should be fine to play this week.

Q: On the Cleveland gameML:

The thing we had to do was go out and play with energy, enthusiasm, and excitement, which we did. Our offense took the ball and marched it down the field. Our defense went in and got a three-and-out. We got off to a good start. We did a fine job on special teams. We still have a couple things to clean up on kickoff returns. We had one bad kickoff. Other than that, I thought we handled things pretty well on special teams for the day. We've got a lot of work to do. The tape was good because we have a lot of things to fix and do. We'll get ready to play going into Pittsburgh.

Q: Have David's teammates been apprised of his situation?ML:

Yes. A lot of the guys have been to see him.

Q: Is there going to be surgery for David?ML:

The indication right now is that hopefully the protective halo will make  further medical attention not needed. Again, it will be an ongoing process. Right now, that would obviously be the best thing, and hopefully that is how it will play out. 

Q: Is the injury career-threatening?ML:

No. At this point it's not career-threatening.

Q: Is there any damage to the spinal cord?ML:

There is no damage to the spinal cord at all. 

Q: Did the young offensive linemen play as well on tape as it appeared to the naked eye?ML:

We did. The guys stepped in and played a lot. When Richie (Braham) was injured, Eric Ghiaciuc came in right away, and we already had Andrew Whitworth starting at guard, and Eric Steinbach sliding out to left tackle and doing an excellent job for Levi Jones. We got an opportunity for those guys to play a lot of football and they did a good job. It was good learning and everyone is going to have to raise their level of awareness and pull together. We could play without Richie this week, and for sure in the future. 

Q: Was David held overnight for observation and released today?ML:

He'll be released today, hopefully. He was in the hospital overnight. He was in there for observation and repeat some studies and scans that they had done to make sure. 

Q: So it's likely Richie Braham won't play Sunday?ML:

Richie will not play Sunday.

Q: Same thing with Dexter Jackson?ML:

We'll see how he is Wednesday, but right now we're not anticipating Dexter. 

Q: What do you do at the safety position? Do you slide Kevin Kaesviharn in?ML:

Kevin will come in and play. We'll just move the other guys up and be ready to go.

Q: Did David lead with the head?ML:

No, he didn't actually. He seemed to have hit with the facemask. It's unfortunate the angle, I don't know what causes that. We'll move on. 

Q: How's Chad Johnson?ML:

Chad's fine.

Q: In regard to passing with 24-point lead, did you consider resting your starters?ML:

I don't worry about that. You've got to play football. It's third down. We want to make a first down and keep the other side off the ball, too, right? If we make the first down, then we don't have to punt the football. We don't have to do anything and we can just kneel on it. All we need is one first down and we kneel on the football. That's part of playing offense and at that point of the field you look forward to doing that. We didn't do a very good job of that. They stopped us and the ball went off our hands for an interception.

Q: Are you going to watch the Steelers tonight?ML:

I don't know. I'll be watching tape. They'll be on the tape I'm watching, for sure.

Q: Carson seems to be more and more comfortable:ML:
I never thought he felt uncomfortable. I think he was in the groove when we got started. I thought he looked pretty sharp. He did things well. He made some very, very good throws and put the ball where it needed to be. He made a nice throw on third down to Kelley Washington. Kelley got a few inches of separation and the ball was right there. So he played well.

Q: With all the injuries, it's a good thing this is the deepest team you've had?ML:

We get to prove that every Sunday. This is going into our third football game. We've got a lot of football to play and the guys have handled it well thus far. We've just got to keep going.

Q: This year it seems like a good time for the bye week in Week 4 (laughs):ML:

Last year's comment was it was too late. The schedule is the schedule. I don't waste much time worrying about the schedule.

Q: Talk a little bit about Rudi Johnson:ML:

We did a good job of blocking the guys. We did a nice job of carrying the football. He ran through some arm tackles and made some good yards. It's good he's off to a good start this season. I think this is probably the best start he's had to the beginning of a season.

Q: Did you hear the "we want Pittsburgh chants"?ML:

I did not.

Q: More on Pittsburgh game:ML:

We're going to go to Pittsburgh and play a game against the Pittsburgh

Steelers. It's a division game and it's on the road. It's an important football game and there are going to be 13 ones after that just as important.

Q: Is there a danger of putting too much on this game?ML:

I don't think our players are worried on that. They will not put too much on it. It's a whole new season. Let's go play it. It's a team in our division fighting for the same thing we are. We have to go over to their place to play the first one.

Q: Talk about the blocking of the wide receivers:ML:

I really think coach Hue Jackson and coach (Bob) Bratkowski both thought it was one of the better days our receivers have had blocking. They showed great effort in blocking. It's an area we can keep getting better. If we can get those guys locked up down the field, then those extra yards Rudi gets can be bigger yards.

Q: What were your thoughts on how the left side of the offensive line blocked?ML:

I thought they did a good job. We'll leave it at that.

Q: Do you get a sense that David is not taking things for granted?ML:

There's no question. Originally, he asked if he had to wear it the halo for just a couple days. That's David. The good thing is his parents were here. He is doing as fine as a guy can be who's injured and is going to miss football this year, and he's going to miss it in a big way because it's David. But he'll make the best of it and we'll make the best of it. We'll have to move forward.

Q: Did you think the hit on Chad Johnson was dirty?ML:

I don't know.

Q: Will David (Pollack) be back next year?ML:

Yes, he should be back next year.
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