News and views on all things American Football from a fans perspective

Bengals Press Conference

Friday October 28th – The Bengals arrived in London this morning. Unlike teams in the past there were no huge shipments of ketchup and toilet paper this year the Bengals did make a few provisions.  

“They only have three flavours of Gatorade in the UK. Here is the US, we have a variety of flavours, so we shipped a couple of cases of Gatorade over,” said Connelly. “They use a different size paper than we use here, so we shipped over paper.”

The Bengals fans have travelled in force too. They’ve sent over the largest contingent of fans for a UK NFL game. In fact, Jeremy Rauch of Cincinnati’s Fox 19 said that the Bengals were allocated 1,500 tickets which sold out within 24 hours! Eager Bengals fans then snapped up an additional 800 tickets, making roughly 2,300 in total. UK and US Bengals fans will be combining in Wembley to chant ‘Who Dey’.


Marvin Lewis 

Up first for the Bengals was head coach Marvin Lewis. He was the funniest coach I’ve seen at a press conference, which was impressive when you consider that he and the rest of the team had just landed from a 7-hour flight earlier this morning.

The coached stressed that whilst they’d approached it like any other game; they’d also stressed the need for getting sleep in before the flight.

On his facing his former offensive co-ordinator (Jay Gruden, now with the Redskins) for the first time he said “We know Jay does a great job and their offense has a lot of skill players. We’re going to have to do on defence and get some points up on offence”.

When quoted meaningless stats about the home team losing in previous International Series games he laughed and responded “Generally the team that end up with the most points wins the football game” Routine

Coach said he wasn’t worried about stopping Washington’s outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan, who’s having a great year and was impressive against the Eagles. He said that Kerrigan is a good player, but we play good players every week.

Lewis made the room laugh when asked if Vontaze Burfict having the day off from training was routine he said “Yes, if anything in Vontaze’s life is routine.”

Andy Dalton 

Quarterback Andy Dalton also took the podium and stated that Coach Lewis had done a good job of reminding them of the situation and that “We’re here to play a football game. Obviously, it’s cool that we’re here in London but we’re here for the game. Obviously, we’re putting a lot of importance on it because that’s what matters!”. Dalton also stressed ball security as it had had kept them in games.

He thought that the atmosphere at the game would be a little different to what they’re used to as there wouldn’t be one team that everyone’s rooting for “But we expect a good crowd, hopefully there’s big plays and the crowd enjoys it.”

The Bengals quarterback felt like they had to their job and said that Marvin (Lewis) had been talking to them about focusing on their assignment and the big plays will happen.

Dre Kirkpatrick 

After the podium speakers, the media had a chance to speak to individual players. I spoke to Bengals cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick also emphasised the importance of getting some good sleep. He stated that the coaching staff were keeping the team up and active today so that they’d sleep well tonight and adjust to the time difference. He was pleased that his mum and sisters were at able to come to London to watch the match.

Andrew Whitworth 

Welcome news for the team was that left tackle Andrew Whitworth had passed through concussion protocol and will be playing on Sunday. I asked him if he was expecting tough game against a Redskins team that had done a good job of getting to the Quarterback. He said that they felt they had good matchups along the line and would be fine if everyone handled their assignment. Many offensive lineman say that they prefer run blocking to pass blocking because they can fire out more and be more aggressive. I asked Whit if he had a preference. He replied that he felt that he enjoyed both equally and had been in the league as long as he had because he was good at both.

Read part two later today and found out what running backs Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard had to say about their upcoming match and the London crowds.

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