Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Bengals don't offer contract to LB Ross

By Mark Curnutte
Enquirer staff writer

Youth, apparently, will be served at middle linebacker for the Bengals.

Adrian Ross said the Bengals told him they are not interested in signing him to a contract.

Rookie Caleb Miller is expected to start Sunday in place of Nate Webster, whose patella tendon injury suffered against the Ravens is expected to end his season. Coach Marvin Lewis said the club probably will place Webster on injured reserve.

Miller is coming off a serious ankle injury suffered Sept. 12 against the Jets.

Ross, who played for the Bengals for six seasons, had a tryout Monday - the same day Webster underwent surgery.

"It's disappointing," Ross said of not being offered a contract.

The Bengals might be auditioning another free agent linebacker, but they aren't saying.

The Bengals have one linebacker on their practice squad, rookie Larry Stevens, who is familiar with the defensive scheme and could be signed to the 53-man roster.

If they don't make a move, the Bengals will go to Pittsburgh this week with just five linebackers, including two rookies (Miller and Landon Johnson) and a free agent (Marcus Wilkins) who was signed Sept. 1 after being waived by Arizona.

Brian Simmons and Kevin Hardy are the other linebackers.

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