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Notes: Why Lewis doesn't like new PAT; Wilder tries FB; Rex dabbles in slot


Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis, a member of the competition committee, isn't happy with the longer point after attempt, and predicts more two-point attempts.

"I haven't been for it,' said Lewis of the move to the 33-yard line after Tuesday's practice. "There's nothing wrong with what we had. It's a disadvantage for our division because we play in it all the time."

Lewis says teams are going to have to add more two-point plays and practice defending them more since "there'll be more two-point plays because there'll be one-point misses." He also said the cold weather is going to contribute to the rise of the two-pointer.

Especially in the AFC North where "you have four outdoor stadiums and weather changes."

Lewis is against the PAT going to 33 yards even though the competition committee endorsed it and only Washington and Oakland voted against it in last month's ownership meeting. He also didn't like the Eagles' proposal to move the two-point play up to the one-yard line from the two.

"It would have created more plays, more challenges, more penalties. Pass interference. All those things," Lewis said. "It was a proposal that didn't make any sense. That's what happens when you have people propose stuff that aren't in the meeting. A lot of time was spent on the thing, then all of a sudden there was an overnight response. It doesn't make much sense."

Lewis said there's now an added premium of having a good kicker and pointed to 2010, when Mike Nugent tore his ACL late in the season. The Bengals missed three of their last 12 field goal tries by two different kickers, two from less than 30 yards.

"When Mike got hurt, we didn't have a guy that would make it. It was 50-50. We would have been going for two every time, unless you need the kick to win the game. It's going to be  different strategically and multiply those division games throughout and we're going to have a bigger percentage of that weather related."

Since Lewis has been the Bengals coach, they have tried 20 two-point plays, tied for the 20th most since 2003, according to Elias Sports Bureau. They've made seven for a 35-percent conversion rate, 26th in the league and behind the current average of 47 percent. Lewis bristles when he hears NFL coaches are going to stay conservative and stick with the 33-yard PAT, which has a 91-percent conversion rate compared to the 99 percent from 18.

"It's not being conservative," Lewis said. "It's about scoring points. If you're only going to score 50 percent of the time, why would you go for two and have a negative play after a positive play? It makes no sense to deflate your team."

Lewis doesn't know if he'll go for two more, but he does know his defense has to prepare to face more two-point plays. He knows he won't get a firm idea of the impact in the preseason because he says teams won't want to show their two-point plays.

"We'll know after a year,' he said....

In the third practice of his comeback from foot miseries that cost him all last season, wide receiver Marvin Jones looked like he never left. He sped past cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick on a go route and kept going when quarterback Andy Dalton lofted it over Jones' left shoulder.

"He's Marvin Jones. He's what he was when he left," said offensive coordinator Hue Jackson. "He can run, he can catch, he's explosive. He's sudden. He's quick. He's fast. He's all those things." …

Florida State running back James Wilder Jr., on the practice squad last season, is taking snaps at both running back and fullback for the first time this spring since high school. He talks to his father every day and James Wilder Sr., is telling him to keep his versatility and keep his hand in at running back. The elder Wilder, Tampa Bay's workhorse during the '80s, also made the switch but he did it at the end of his career instead of at the beginning. In his final season of 1990, Wilder Sr. played 15 games for the Lions as a fullback blocking for Hall-of-Famer Barry Sanders…

Running back Rex Burkhead meets with the backs and position coach Kyle Caskey, but Jackson hasn't forgotten how Burkhead bailed him out of a jam in the Wild Card Game when Jackson lined him up as a slot receiver in the first half of the game he didn't have Jones (foot, ankle) or A.J. Green (concussion) and Burkhead had two catches that included the longest by a Bengals receiver that day. So Burkhead lined up in the slot often on Tuesday.

"He  can do a little bit of everything. He can run the ball, too. But he can catch it, protect," Jackson said. "He's one of the better players on our team so we'll find things that  we can do with him."

After watching Burkhead light it up playing Broncos slot receiver Wes Welker on the scout team in the next-to-last-week of the regular season , Jackson approached him about working with the receivers some of the time…

The backup QBs had their moments. Terrelle Pryor threw a couple of crisp slants across the middle, but he also overthrew by five yards Cobi Hamilton running wide open down the middle. AJ McCarron threw a terrific slant to Brandon Tate on the sideline and also had a nice scramble where he found Burkhead getting past safety Shawn Williams. He also threw a pick when safety Reggie Nelson went underneath Hamilton on the sideline....

Wide receivers Mohamed Sanu and James Wright didn't practice and Lewis wouldn't say why, but it doesn't appear to be serious. Like last week, safety George Iloka and right end Margus Hunt didn't work. Iloka said last week he's not seriously hurt. There seems to be some doubt about Hunt's status, although Lewis did say he'd be back for training camp…

Lewis also said not to read anything into Pro Bowl WILL backer Vontaze Burfict (knee) not rehabbing with the club like he did last week when the media saw practice: "He can rehab anytime, from 6 a.m. on," and indicated the media may not see Burfict rehabbing again this spring…

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