Terrell Owens had three catches for 35 yards against his old team. (AP photo)
» Offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski didn't tell the offense they were going to use the no-huddle until Friday night's pregame meeting. He said the Bengals had moved away from the no-huddle for the last couple of years because they were trying to become more of a running team to fit the AFC North division.
"I thought it went well for the first time in live action," Bratkowski said. "We've gone away from it for two years. We had some new guys on the offensive line that didn't have a lot of experience working with it. It is something we have worked on but not in game action."
» Head coach Marvin Lewis said the offense is still adjusting to running the no-huddle with the umpire now in his new position opposite the referee on the offensive side of the ball. He said that has resulted in a six- or seven-second delay in getting the ball spotted. Bratkowski said after hearing of other teams' complants, one of the reasons the Bengals wanted to try it was to do it under the new conditions.
» Both Lewis and quarterback Carson Palmer said the biggest disappointment of the night was not making the 4th-and-1 on the second drive of the game from the Buffalo 43. Safety Donte Whitner came up and stopped running back Cedric Benson on the Bengals' left edge. Bratkowski said he has to check the film but the initial thought was there was a mental error by left tackle Andrew Whitworth.
"We want to be able to make that and give the coaches confidence that we can make those fourth and ones," Palmer said.
» Defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer was not pleased with what his team did in the first half.
"We're not very good," he said. "We had three or four defensive linemen not dressed, no safeties. It's alright, we'll play them in November."
Asked if he was more vanilla than usual because the Bengals play the Bills later in the season, Zimmer said, "We'll see."
» Rookie tight end Jermaine Gresham said he had a good night and a bad night. He caught his first touchdown pass but Bratkowski said Gresham also made mental mistakes on a holding call and a motion penalty. Gresham likes the up-tempo offense.
"I like it. I came from a school that did a lot of it at Oklahoma. We came out and caught the defense off-guard. It worked out very well."
» Palmer's nine completions went to four different receivers for a passer rating of 142.2. He only played one snap in the second quarter and said he might have gone longer if the first three drives hadn't gone as well. Because the Bengals played five preseason games this year, there wasn't a set way to approach playing time. Usually the third preseason game is when the starters play the most, and last week against the Eagles will be the only game that Palmer played an entire half. He may not play beyond the first series in Thursday's preseason finale in Indianapolis.
» Terrell Owens on coming back to Buffalo: "The fans were great. It was funny. I definitely couldn't tell if I was an opponent or the home team. It shows the fans' love for me and vice versa."
» Lewis wasn't that concerned with the penalties. He said the main thing was who was making them. He indicated the penalites that concerned him were a holding call on left guard Nate Livings and a personal foul call on defensive end Jonathan Fanene because they are regular players. The Bengals finished with 12 penalties for 122 yards.
"It was a good ballgame to have," Lewis said. "It was a good preseason game. We got a lot of quality snaps for guys that we're trying to decide on."
An example of that was kickers Mike Nugent and Dave Rayner alternating both kickoffs and field goals. Nugent nailed a 54-yard field goal while Rayner connected on a 32-yarder.