Andy Dalton is headed to his third Pro Bowl.
MOBILE, Ala. - Whenever the Bengals have made a decision on a kicker for the long haul in the Marvin Lewis Era, they've always opted for the recycled veteran in the Shayne Graham and Mike Nugent mold before they ended their careers in Cincinnati as the club's second- and third all-time leading scorers.
It's believed they're talking to Randy Bullock, the six-year veteran they signed at the end of last season to succeed Nugent. Even with Bullock expected to be in the fold, it's believed the Bengals are going to keep looking and that very well may mean a rookie gets a look.
And maybe even from here at the Senior Bowl, where Memphis State's Jake Elliott is kicking for the South and Arizona State's Zane Gonzalez for the North. Special teams coordinator Darrin Simmons points out that his longest tenured punters, Kevin Huber (2009) and Kyle Larson (2004) came out of the Senior Bowl.
"We're looking for points. That's the priority. You saw how important it was in the championship games on Sunday," said Simmons as he went into Tuesday morning's weigh-in at the Mobile Convention Center.
Gonzalez made 92 percent of his 25 field goals and was seven of nine from 50 yards and beyond. Elliott hit 80.8 percent, and was two of three from 50.
Simmons isn't pleased that Saturday's game (2:30 p.m.-NFL Network) is allowing only two kickoffs, one to start the game and one to start the second half. But he does like the extra points are set at an NFL 33 yards.
"Should be. They should do what we do," Simmons said …
Cleveland head coach Hue Jackson's staff is coaching the South and long-time Bengals scout Greg Seamon is working with the quarterbacks. And, no, none of them is Clemson's Deshaun Watson.
Jackson said this week he sees switching Seamon to QBs this season after he coached tight ends last year. And why not? Seamon was Jackson's quarterbacks coach at Pacific more than 30 years ago …
Jackson, the former Bengals offensive coordinator, saluted one of his old QB pupils when he heard the Bengals' Andy Dalton made his third Pro Bowl when New England's Tom Brady earned yet another Super Bowl berth.
"He deserves it," Jackson said. "I thought he had a good year."
It wasn't a big surprise for Dalton with Brady and Ben Roethlisberger tied up championship Sunday and Oakland's Derek Carr injured. He could care less he's going in the second batch.
"It's an honor to play in the Pro Bowl," said Dalton, who has now gone to as many Super Bowls as Boomer Esiason and one fewer than Ken Anderson, the Bengals' two all-time leading passing leaders that each won an MVP.
Dalton had no second thoughts about saying yes to Sunday's game in Orlando, Fla., (8 p.m.-ESPN) despite the injury risk.
"I think in that game the quarterback position doesn't have too much to worry about. It's probably the safest position," Dalton said. "You just can't go into a game worrying about that." ….
At least two former Bengals are at the Senior Bowl looking for work in the coaching ranks. Former right guard Mike Goff just finished a two-year grad assistant job at USC and he brought his resume along with USC right tackle Zach Banner. Banner is playing for the North and Goff is in town to also give him some pro advice.
Also here is former Bengals wide receiver Glenn Holt, a former player and coach at Kentucky who is coaching and teaching at St. Thomas Aquinas High School in the Miami area, best known as the alma mater of Bengals' Giovani Bernard and Geno Atkins.