Updated: 11:45 p.m.
On the day Paul Alexander welcomed his third top 10 pick during his 15 seasons as the Bengals offensive line coach, he broke down how he felt his inexperienced group has played in the first three preseason games before the arrival of Andre Smith.
The numbers don't look overwhelming with the Bengals getting sacked 11 times, but Alexander traces only two to the starting line: A combo sack allowed by right guard Bobbie Williams and Anthony Collins and another allowed by left tackle Andrew Whitworth.
The yards per rush of 4.3 is an improvement for a team that hasn't finished at four yards per carry in a season since 2005.
As the Bengals drove for the go-ahead touchdown Thursday night against the Rams, Alexander said he felt pretty good until rookie tackle Gus Parrish allowed a sack that forced a lost fumble just before the two-minute warning.
"I'm saying, 'Great, no one got beat the whole game; everyone pass blocked great.' Then the last play of the game Gus gets beat late off the count," Alexander said. "I think we're running the ball better. And I think we've had very few sacks on the offensive line. The five guys that I watch. I don't watch DBs. I don't watch linebackers. I watch the five guys that I'm in charge of."
Still, Alexander knows he won't know what that means until the real stuff starts.
"OK, I think," he said. "We'll see."
OCHO SCOOPO: Chad Ochocinco, who, by the way, on Sunday pulled a Hugh Hefner by unveiling the greatest bathrobe in Bengals history, says he's not going to be scooping on a regular basis.
Late Saturday night The Ocho tweeted that Andre Smith had signed with the Bengals and while it wasn't official, it was well on its way. After a lively give-and-take with some ESPN heavyweights on his Twitter page, The Ocho said he wouldn't make it a practice.
"If I really wanted to, I could beat the media all the time because I know all the players. Rookie. College. It doesn't matter," he said. "And you know what? They tell me what's going on."
For instance, The Ocho says he revealed that Tom Brady's shoulder is OK, but he says he made the call to the Pats QB more out of sentiment than scoop.
"Those players I talk to on a consistent basis know I care about them and when I find out they're hurt or something, I call them," Ochocinco said. "But don't worry. I'm not going to do it that much. I wouldn't do that to you guys."
The Ocho also revealed on a tweet he'd been fined $5,000 for wearing an orange chin strap last Thursday night against the Rams, but he admits that's not exactly news.
"That was for the people who don't know," said The Ocho, who also says he has set aside another $100,000 to cover his weekly fines for the year. "The storm is coming."
He offered these observations lolling around after practice in a black bathrobe sent to him by the company Sports Robe. It has 85 with the nameplate Ochocinco on the back and when asked if it was a robe for boxing, he set it straight. "Can't you see it's a bathrobe?"