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Palmer officially out; O'Sullivan starts

Posted: 6:45 p.m.

FOXBORO, Mass. - Carson Palmer (ankle) is officially out with J.T. O'Sullivan getting the start as the Bengals quarterback Thursday night here against the Patriots.

The Bengals aren't as hurting at tight end as once thought. Both starter Dan Coats (ankle) and backup Chase Coffman are going after sitting out Monday's practice. Other players shelved who were also out of last week's opener: wide receiver Antonio Chatman, cornerback David Jones, and tight ends Ben Utecht and Matt Sherry. Linebacker Rey Maualuga and guard Evan Mathis are making their season debuts. Linebacker Brandon Johnson (hamstring) dressed but isn't expected to play. 

UTECHT STILL WAITS: The agent for Ben Utecht said Thursday that his client plans to evaluated by noted concussion expert Dr. Richard Cantu on Monday in Boston. Chris Murray said that Utecht has no plans to retire despite a history of concussions and that his desire is to get back on the field.

Murray said Utecht has been undergoing weekly evaluations by Bengals doctors since he lost consciousness and has yet to be cleared. Typically if a player loses some sort of consciousness, he'll miss two to four weeks.

KEELS VISIT?Alvin Keels, the agent for Andre Smith, said Thursday night before the game that he's pondering a visit to Cincinnati to talk with Bengals management in an effor to end the holdout that reaches three weeks Friday. "But I'll only come if I can come up with something that is going to get us closer to where we are now."

As seen on the second episode of Hard Knocks Wednesday night, the cameras caught the basic positions of the two sides. With the sixth pick, Keels is looking for something more than the seventh pick. Bengals executive vice president Katie Blackburn said the club is looking for a deal more in line with the rest of the first round.

*SLANTS AND SCREENS: *Invited by Billy Sullivan's son, Chuck, Bengals president Mike Brown attended Thursday afternoon's induction ceremony at the Patriots Hall of Fame. Billy Sullivan, founder of the Patriots was inducted along with running back Jim Nance.  

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