9-11-03, 9:30 p.m.
BY GEOFF HOBSON
Chad Johnson is the city that never sleeps.
He's still flogging himself over Sunday's 30-10 loss to Denver even though he made a Web Gem 41-yard catch for the Bengals' only touchdown on his way to 95 yards. He's been thinking about the touchdown catch he could have had earlier deep down the middle, but the ball was overthrown.
"I cramped up," Johnson said. "I was cramped up as the game went on. My fault. I didn't drink any fluids at all. I think I was so excited. Just anxious to play and get it going."
Johnson, who went as hard as anyone during training camp, rested his legs during Thursday's practice and didn't dress. But that doesn't mean he's not here. He's literally been sleeping at Paul Brown Stadium this week getting ready for the Raiders. Since his apartment at One Lytle Place is a five-minute walk away, Johnson has just been making himself at home.
"I go upstairs and watch tape about nine o'clock," Johnson said of the coaches' offices. "Then when I get tried, I come back downstairs into the player's lounge and sleep. It's cool. I've got a blanket, and I get up at 7 and eat breakfast and I'm ready to go. Football is all I've got going on."
Johnson and offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski have often said that the only thing standing in his way is himself now that he begins his third season. Johnson is seeking more consistency on his route running, not to mention Gatorade and water.
"I'm not going to make that same mistake again," Johnson said. "I'm going to drink the stuff all weekend. I'm still mad over the way the game went. I wanted to win Marvin's debut real bad. I feel bad the way we went out there because that's just not our team."
Johnson has never met the league's all-time receiver, the Raiders' Jerry Rice, but he finally gets his chance Sunday before the game. Johnson has it all planned out.
"I'm going to call him, 'Mr. Rice,'" Johnson said. "And then I'm going to be a reporter. I'm going to interview him and ask him as many questions as I can. Then when he's playing on offense, I'm going to be taking notes."
STADIUMS HONORED: The National Building Museum in Washington D.C. announced this week it will present its prestigious annual Honor Award for 2003 to Major League Baseball and the National Football League. The Honor Award recognizes the important role that new football stadiums and baseball parks such as Great American Ball Park and Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, have played in the physical revitalization of American cities over the past decade.
NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue and MLB Commissioner Bud Selig accept the award before an anticipated audience of over 1,000 cultural, corporate, real estate industry, political, and sports industry leaders at a black tie gala on Sept. 17 in the landmark Great Hall of the National Building Museum.
Paul Brown Stadium and Great American Ball Park are included on the list of 37 stadiums that will have been constructed or have undergone major renovations over a 15-year period beginning in 1992. The list includes 21 football stadiums, 15 baseball parks, and one shared facility.
The award honors engaging and evocative architecture, careful planning, and innovative engineering that contribute to the popular appeal of new sports facilities.
NO PERMISSION SLIP:** Finally, backup Bengals linebacker Riall Johnson and brother Teyo get a chance to go at it Sunday in Oakland. Growing up in Lynwood, Wash., their parents didn't allow them to compete against each other in any sport for fear they, "would kill each other," Riall said. "But now it's our job. We're grown men."
The 6-6, 250-pound Teyo, 21, a second round pick of the Raiders this past April, is a backup tight end trying to work it so he can face the 6-3, 240-pound Riall, 25, on the kickoff return team. They also may face off on punts, and Teyo knows what he'll be going against.
"We don't see their games out here, so I take some tape out of the video room and watch," Teyo said. "The closest we came was when I was a scout team quarterback at Stanford, but he couldn't touch me."
Of course, when they did go at it, they realized their parents' worst fears. At a barbecue for the Stanford football team, they were matched in a
Gladiator-type jousting event. Riall knocked Teyo off his mount and past the crash pad, and Teyo nearly hit his head on a generator. Teyo then got back up and hit Riall hard enough on the top of his head that he chipped his tooth.
The last time they played basketball?
"About five years ago. He beat me, but I was coming off a sprained ankle," Riall said.
"It was close," Teyo said.
Which is pretty good, because Teyo has a spot on the Canadian Olympic basketball team (they were both born in British Columbia) and may toy with pursuing a career in the NBA at some point. After all, the Raiders' Bo Jackson was the best of all two-sport athletes. After making 79 catches and scoring 15 touchdowns in his career for the Cardinal, Teyo started for the nationally-ranked basketball team, and this is where some brotherly pride comes in.
"He was the best three-point shooter on the team as far as percentage, but the coach always got mad when he shot them," Riall said.
The pride goes both ways.
"You know he's the only guy to ever lead the Pac 10 in sacks two straight years?" Teyo asked. "And a lot of good players have come out of the Pac 10."
Riall got the football coaches on his bad side during a practice when Teyo got in a fight, and Riall came off running off the sidelines to help. But Sunday is a little different.
"I'd like to get a picture of us coming across each other," Riall said. "That would be framed in both houses."
The Schobels already have a framed photo in their parents' family-style restaurant in the Houston area. Matt, the Bengals tight end, actually blocked Aaron, the Bills' defensive end, once or twice in last year's regular season finale.
"You're not getting anything from me. It was a wash," Schobel said. "It's a special day. And we're going to do it again here in a few weeks (Oct. 5)."