Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis confirmed Monday that wide receiver Marvin Jones and running back Rex Burkhead are going to return to practice when the Bengals begin preparing for the Oct. 5 Sunday Night Football game (Cincinnati's Channel 5-8:30) in New England.
After meetings and a brief practice Tuesday, the Bengals head on their bye week and return to work on the Patriots next Monday. The Pats don't play again until that Monday night in Kansas City, but offensive coordinator Hue Jackson doesn't think that gives the Bengals the edge.
"It's the best of the best," Jackson said of the NFL. "Best coaches, best players."
Jones has practiced only a handful of times since the end of last season. For much of the spring he rested a sore ankle and a few days after returning to practice he broke the fifth metatarsal bone in the Aug 9 practice and had a pin inserted in his foot.
Jones, known of his down-field speed that netted him 10 touchdowns last season, doesn't think it will take him long to get acclimated.
Burkhead injured his knee early in the fourth quarter of the Aug. 16 preseason game against the Jets.
BOLING ROLLING: Take a bow, Clint Boling.
Boling, the Bengals left guard, played a big role in the Bengals' 33-7 victory over the Titans Sunday. Not only did he help blank Tennessee end Jurrell Casey, a double-digit sacker last season, but his ability to pull on the power play helped the Bengals finish off three red-zone trips for rushing touchdowns.
"It's that (power) play and it's the runners, it's the mindset and the mentality and I think our guys when they get down there they want to get in there,' said offensive coordinator Hue Jackson.
"He played against a tremendous football player. I think those guys had eight sacks going into the game and they got zero. That's a testament to all those guys up front. The communication, guys working together, the young center did an outstanding job… Did Boling play great yesterday? Yes, he did against a very good player all day. But he had helpmates and teammates that were there for him too."
Boling and rookie center Russell Bodine drew the highest grades on an offensive line that got the game ball from profootballfocus.com. Casey came into the game with two sacks, but PFF said Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton had just one pressure as the Bengals still have yet to give up a sack this year. Mike Pollak came off the bench to pinch hit capably for injured right guard Kevin Zeitler, making rapid progress with his calf injury.
"Russell is doing a nice job. The tackles have been consistent," Lewis said. "Clint did a great job yesterday against a good player. Mike stepped in and did a nice job. I feel good about that."