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Notes: Carson's window

Posted: 6:10 p.m.



Two issues are going to stick to the Bengals like Al Gore on the environment this year. Carson Palmer handled them with equal aplomb ("We can definitely win a Super Bowl") when asked about the Bengals' "Window Of Opportunity," and their poor national image.

"I definitely feel there's a window," said Palmer of a team led by an offense that has nine starters with at least five years experience. "The only way you get away from (the image problem) is guys don't get into trouble and concentrate on winning football games. When you go out and lose, it gives the media something bad to talk about and they always divert back to all the arrests and the things we've had going on here."

It looks like head coach Marvin Lewis is going to play a starring role on SportsCenter for the next 24 hours because ESPN's Bob Holtzman started his Friday news conference right away with the perception question because of the off-field problems, and Lewis showed his strategy quickly.

"I'm not sure what off-field problems you're speaking of," said Lewis and leaped when asked about the 14 arrests since December of 2005.

"That wouldn't be fair," Lewis said. "Is there a guy in this locker room who has been arrested this year? So let's move forward."

Only cornerback Johnathan Joseph on a marijuana possession charge in January. Linebacker A.J. Nicholson was cut last month hours after he pleaded not guilty to domestic violence.

"I don't hear it. I don't hear from people that really matter," said Lewis of the criticism. "What everybody says to me is they're very pleased with the direction with what needs to be done. It's unfortunate that a year ago we had a number of those things happen. Particularly the one player (Chris Henry), but he's paid a severe, severe price for that. Other than that, I think we prefer just to look forward and look at all the positives because all those things that mar the perception, I think there have been more positives."

Palmer is positively convinced his team can win the Super Bowl, but "so can a lot of teams," he said. "It depends on how hard you work and what it comes down to is your execution."

"If you do have a chance on offense it's because of your offensive line and I feel we have one of the better offensive lines," Palmer said. "The defense is getting better and better. We drafted really well there. I think our window is open. I don't know if it's for one year or six years. Only time will tell. We're definitely good enough to win a Super Bowl."



While wide receiver Chad Johnson ran around with renewed vigor in Friday afternoon's second practice, fellow wideout Antonio Chatman had to leave to get an IV for dehydration.


Palmer said he won't wear his knee brace during the spring camps. Only in games when he knows he's going to get hit.


The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Friday that Odell Thurman had a 90-day jail term for a drunken-driving conviction reduced to six days in a treatment center.

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