Hump Day Headlines: Safety First

Pete Prisco examines some looming training camp battles in the AFC North. In Cincinnati — or rather, Georgetown, KY — he thinks the big fight will be between Dexter Jackson, Marvin White and Chinedum Ndukwe for the two starting safety spots. Prisco fingers Jackson as the odd man out.

WDR thinks the Bengals are better at linebacker this year.

The Chickster sees potential for rookie holdouts on the horizon. All 10 of the Bengals’ 2008 draft picks remain unsigned.

Former Bengals WR Chris Henry is broke. His re-trial on misdemeanor assault charges starts next Monday. His first trial ended in a hung jury.

For all you stat geeks out here, Football Outsiders has replaced DPAR with DYAR. Under the new measure, Carson Palmer moves up from 7 to 6 on the list of the league’s top QB’s, Browns QB Derek Anderson moves into the top 10 at 10, and Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger falls from 9 to 11.

Fox’s Pete Schrager says the Bengals have an outside shot at the playoffs.

Cincy is going to need a lot of help. But, in truth, the Ravens still have too many question marks on offense to win the division and the Browns and Steelers play arguably the two toughest schedules in the entire league this year. The AFC North door is cracked open a TINY SMUDGE for Cincy.

I’ll obviously have more to say on this subject as the season gets closer, but from my seat, the door is open wider than just a “tiny smudge” — as long as the Bengals can stay healthy, something they haven’t been able to do since the playoff loss to Pittsburgh in early 2006.

Scout.com contributor Alan Wilson says the Bengals are responsible for the 10th-most agonizing loss in Jacksonville Jaguars’ history.

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AFC North Watch: With Pittsburgh billionaire Stanley Drunkenmiller chasing a controlling interest in the Steelers, The New York Times says that the days of the NFL franchise as a family business are coming to an end. But not, of course, in Cincy…

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