Warrick finishing sentence

BY GEOFF HOBSON

Rookie receiver Peter Warrick missed today's practice so he could work the final three days of his community service in Tallahassee, Fla. "

And then that's going to be it. He'll be finished and have it all behind him," said Norm Nixon, Warrick's agent. "He'll be back in Cincinnati Monday."

When Warrick gets back from picking up debris along Tallahassee's roads, he'll be able to pick up nearly half of his $9.3 million signing bonus the Bengals are keeping until he finishes the 30 days of service he received for a petty theft charge last fall.

Warrick won't be fined for missing today's practice, the last workout before the Bengals return from their bye week next Tuesday. When Warrick wondered about getting the final days in during the first three days of training camp, the Bengals said they would fine him, preferring he not miss practice.

"But our bye week unfortunately happened to be on a holiday weekend (Labor Day), and he couldn't work Sunday and Monday," said coach Bruce Coslet. "There'll be no fine because we knew that back in training camp."

FIELD DAYS: The Bengals worked on the Paul Brown Stadium grass today, but Coslet had already watched rookie kicker Neil Rackers kick off it last Tuesday and saw him drill a 65-yard field goal. The temporary grass is getting a little brown, but Coslet said, "the footing is great on this field."

Rackers is slowing down the speeded-up motion that led to his two missed field goals and an extra point last Friday, but he won't worry if the grass is choppy.

"The field can't make a difference anyway, you just have to adjust," Rackers said. "Today was real good. I don't know if they rolled it or it's just worn in, but it was good."

BROWN BACKS COSLET: The NFL season opens Sunday and even though the Bengals don't play for another week, their coach is already getting the mid-season treatment. The national publications have made Coslet their automatic "on the hot seat" guy. But you don't have to be a guru from Canton to figure that out since since Coslet is working on the final year of his contract after two seasons at 7-25.

Still, the man who hired Coslet and could choose not to rehire him, Bengals President Mike Brown, bristles at the pundits who already have Coslet gone.

"How would they know?" Brown asked. "He wouldn't be here if I didn't think he could do the job. He's a knowledgeable football guy and a lot of what has happened isn't his fault. I think he can get us back on the winning track."

But the expectations are also greater from management. What makes this season different than all the rest is that a new stadium must be filled and Brown thinks there is more talent on both sides of the ball than what has been here the past few seasons.

"I feel we have a real chance to do better," Brown said.

THIS AND THAT: Coslet on the four-day rest: "Get away from it a little bit. Recharge your batteries. Keep Cleveland in the back of your mind. Come back full of . . .vinegar. Get well if your hurt." . . .

Trainer Paul Sparling expects everyone to be probable on Tuesday, which means DE Vaughn Booker (knee), CB Artrell Hawkins (knee), S Tremain Mack (ankle). . . The club is working on offers that would extend the contracts of two starers facing free agency, center Rich Braham and left guard Matt O'Dwyer. O'Dwyer, suspended for the Sept. 10 opener for his part in a Long Island bar incident last year, can't be on the premises at all next week when the Bengals return from their bye week.

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