Updated: 4:30 p.m.
Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said in his weekly Wednesday news conference that he expects cornerback Adam Jones (shoulder) to practice "some" this week.
But that doesn't mean he'll play. Starting WILL linebacker Keith Rivers (foot) also practiced some last week and expected to play, but Lewis decided not to dress him "because I didn't see enough," and because he felt more comfortable with healthier players on special teams.
» Right end Antwan Odom surfaced with a cast on his left wrist. He says it's a sprain and that he'll be able to play Sunday in Carolina. Odom was working at the beginning of Wednesday's practice while Jones wasn't suited up. Defensive tackle Tank Johnson (unknown) also wasn't working. It's believed that defensive lineman Jon Fanene (hamstring) is out another week. Another defensive lineman, Frostee Rucker, who left with an injury last Sunday, was suited up with everything but his helmet.
» Odom and wide receiver Terrell Owens were listed as limited. Fanene, Jones, Rucker and Johnson were listed as not practicing. Rivers and running back Brian Leonard (foot) went full go Wednesday.
» Hard to remember when a regular-season practice was this hot. At the beginning of practice the Bengals.com billboard said 93 degrees.
» Themes of the week the media is pounding: Carolina's two talented running backs, Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer's efforts to get used to the singular style that is wide receiver Terrell Owens, and wide receiver Chad Ochocinco finally doing interviews on Wednesday for the first time this season.
"Nothing has happened yet," said The Ocho when asked why he's taking the low profile. "Once we get going in the next one or two games I'll talk (more) … I've got some good (stuff).
» But not enough to impress Lewis. As he replaced Owens on the podium, a reporter opined, "Tough act to follow." Lewis agreed vehemently and joked, "I'd rather see him sitting here than 85."
» Owens knows that his 6-3, 225-pound gait can take some getting used to, especially after Palmer threw to the 6-1, 192-pound Ocho and the 6-1, 200-pound T.J. Houshmandzadeh for eight seasons. In fact, Owens says he joked to Palmer the other day that, "I'm T.O., not T.J."
» Safety Chris Crocker says Sunday's game comes down to one thing and one thing only:
"Those two guys in the backfield can run," said Crocker, inferring that wide receiver Steve Smith can't be the priority. "We have to stop the run. That's the game."
» For the 87th straight week the Bengals were Cincinnati's No. 1 TV program with a 30.1 rating and 56 share for the Baltimore win.
» The Bengals are playing a team that's actually been worse than them in the red zone. The Bengals scored at least a field goal on all six trips, but have scored just two touchdowns. The Panthers have also been inside the 20 six times, but they've scored just one touchdown and came away with no scores on four trips with three interceptions and a failure to convert on fourth down.
"Just execution," Panthers coach John Fox said in a conference call with the Cincinnati media Wednesday. "We've moved the ball fine, but we've had too many turnovers in two games. That's why we're 0-2. It's not the way to win games in this league."
Fox should know. Since Lewis, his good friend of nearly three decades, has been the coach of the Bengals, they are plus-42 in turnover differential in that stretch since 2003, Fox's second year with the Panthers. That puts the Bengals fourth in the NFL, a spot ahead Carolina's plus-27 for the past eight seasons.
» More themes: The Bengals' continuing battle with pre-snap penalties. As he came off the field Wednesday, offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski said he's looking to change the way things are called in an effort to cut down on the flags. And he said he liked the way the offense worked at those issues after he told them on Monday that it's OK to be frustrated but don't take it to the practice field.
Yet some of the penalties are just going to be growing pains. The 12 men-on-the-field penalty on third down that blew up last Sunday's first drive happened because rookie tight end Jermaine Gresham was out there in a package in which he didn't belong.
The coaches love the way Gresham keeps improving, but he's having his moments. One happened Sunday when he whiffed blocking Ravens outside linebacker Jarret Johnson so badly that he yelled to quarterback Carson Palmer, "Look out, look out." Since all Gresham was doing was yelling, Palmer made an unbelievable spin move while shoveling the ball to him for a short completion.
"That's not good when the quarterback hears that," Bratkowski said.