Friday, December 19, 2003

Bengals land 2 in Pro Bowl


Anderson, Johnson make plans for bonuses; Kitna, Warrick second alternates

By Mark Curnutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Willie Anderson's prayer was answered Thursday when the right tackle was selected to his first Pro Bowl.

And now Anderson, named to play in the annual NFL all-star game along with Bengals wide receiver Chad Johnson, will make good on his part of the deal.

Anderson will donate his Pro Bowl bonus - believed to be at least $100,000 - to charity.

"I promised God a long time ago," the eighth-year tackle said.

The Bengals have two Pro Bowl players for the first time since 1999, when kick returner Tremain Mack and tailback Corey Dillon went.

The 2003 Bengals also can boast of second alternates Jon Kitna at quarterback and Peter Warrick at kick returner.

"Everybody kind of knew Chad would go because, at that position, everybody can see what you do," said Kitna, third in the league with 25 touchdown passes. "I'm really jazzed for Willie because on the offensive line, it's usually name recognition."

Johnson leads the AFC with 1,211 receiving yards and is tied for the lead with 10 touchdown catches.

"I didn't get here by myself," said Johnson, who thanked coach Marvin Lewis, offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski, Kitna and Anderson. In fact, Johnson said, he is trying to make sure all of the offensive coaches and the other nine offensive starters make the trip to Hawaii for the Feb. 8 game.

"If my money holds out," he said.

Johnson also said his Pro Bowl bonus would cover the $70,000 in fines he has drawn this year.

Of Johnson, Lewis said, "The sky's the limit."

Anderson, he said, "is a leader on and off the field."

Anderson said he voted for former Bengals linebacker Takeo Spikes, a first-time selection in his first season in Buffalo.

"We all voted for (Spikes), and he made sure the guys in Buffalo voted for me," Anderson said.

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E-mail mcurnutte@enquirer.com




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