Updated: 10-20-06, 6:25 a.m.
AdamsIt's not like Sam Adams needs any defending, but defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan wanted to make it clear Thursday that he's not the reason for the Bengals run defense not being where it wants to be.
If Tampa Bay head coach Jon Gruden called out his defensive line last week, Bresnahan called out everybody on his unit.
"You can look at him, look at the big runs, and he may be accountable for one here," Bresnahan said. "But he certainly hasn't been a factor for the problem with the run defense. It's been somebody missing a run fit. Somebody missing three, four tackles on one play. ...Those are the things I'm focused on. I'm not even worried about Sam. Sam shows up. Sam will play. Sam knows the game."
Playing time now seems to be the debate. Like he did when they were together in Oakland, Bresnahan is managing Adams' number of snaps because of a sore knee.
Adams admitted last week that he needs arthroscopic surgery on a knee he injured in the Aug. 28 preseason game against Green Bay. On Thursday, he reiterated he'll keep playing with it and have the procedure after the season.
"We'll see how tough I am," Adams said. "It's feeling better each week."
It looked like it was at its most painful Sunday when he barely could get off the field between snaps, but Bresnahan liked what he did early.
"He was a force, and then it got sore as the game went on," Bresnahan said.
So that's why Adams gave everyone a lift when he worked most of Thursday's practice. It's the first time all season he's been able to get on the field before Friday.
" "This is huge for him," Bresnahan said after the rainy workout in Paul Brown Stadium. "Because to sit and watch as much tape as he watches still doesn't get him fit with his teammates. And that's the feel the guys behind him have to have is where he fits because he fits differently than a smaller guy.
"He may not get as much quickness and movement, but he may move the pile and those things you have to get comfortable with. That's why I think he's more frustrated with not having that fit during the week."
Adams, 33, the three-time Pro Bowler, has stoically hidden his frustration. He knows when he signed here back in April, teams were no longer supposed to run the ball so easily on the Bengals. At the very least, he knows they aren't supposed to be ranked 25th in the NFL against the run.
"Sure it's frustrating, but you look back at Sunday," Adams said. "They got 76 yards on four plays. If we hold up on four plays, we hold them under 50 yards rushing."
Bucs running back Cadillac Williams gouged them for a long run of 38 yards as rookie middle linebacker Ahmad Brooks blitzed. But it wasn't the middle that broke down. It was the perimeter people that failed to spill the ball to what Bresnahan called a free tackler, with his only point being that it was a team gaffe involving run fits.
More frustration? The same play had been stopped twice for negative yardage. The run fits have also been held hostage to the injuries at linebacker that have shuffled the lineup for nearly every game.
But Adams also feels like foes are running away from the inside with counters, misdirection, and screen passes. He thinks this Sunday's matchup suits his style.
"I don't think teams can beat us on the perimeter because we've got pursuit and discipline out there," Adams said. "This team we play Sunday (the Panthers) come right at you. They try to run it down your throat."
And Adams, Bresnahan, and everyone else knows that's what teams are going to keep trying to do. Bresnahan is seeking that consistency, noting his defense held the Bucs to an average of 4.0 yards on first down, but the big play "kills you," and isn't that where we came in at the beginning of the year?
"The run is where we need to start," Bresnahan said. "Force people to get back into the passing game (and) we'll be in great shape."
PerryPERRY READY: More evidence that running back Chris Perry is going to be activated for Sunday's game from the physically unable to perform list. The club waived running back Quincy Wilson on Thursday and probably will re-sign him to the practice squad while making room for Perry on the 53-man roster.
The question doesn't look to be if Perry is going to play Sunday against Carolina, but where? Before practice Thursday, Perry told Fox 19 what he said last week. He's ready to play after returning to practice this week for the first time since last season, it's just up to the coaches.
Last year they often split him out as a receiver and there could be a steady diet of that with only three veteran wide receivers probable for Sunday and one them, not practicing.
"I think I can give Carson (Palmer) another option to throw the ball, hand off, or just another option in general for (offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski) to make a decision on what play call to make," said Perry, who missed the spring and summer with knee and ankle injuries.
INJURY UPDATE: Linebacker Rashad Jeanty (foot) has been downgraded to doubtful again. Wide receiver Chad Johnson (shoulder) didn't practice for the second straight day Thursday, but is listed as probable. Strong safety Dexter Jackson (ankle) and linebacker Brian Simmons (neck) didn't participate in team drills and are questionable.
HenryCOURT PROCEEDINGS: The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Thursday that wide receiver Chris Henry's DUI trial in Clermont County has been continued to Nov. 27. A plea or guilty verdict nets him either a four-game suspension under the NFL's substance abuse policy or similar discipline from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
The Cincinnati Post reported left guard Eric Steinbach, scheduled to stand trial Thursday on a boating under the influence charge in Covington, Ky., is going to agree to a diversionary program. Charges will be dropped after he completes the program, the paper said.