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Game day blog: Browns at Cincinnati Bengals (Week 2 from pregame to postgame)

By Nate Ulrich Published: September 16, 2012

Final score: Bengals 34, Browns 27 (game story; Marla Ridenour's column; notebook; box score)

Pregame notes

Inactives: Browns – quarterback Thaddeus Lewis, wide receiver Jordan Norwood, running back Brandon Jackson, safety Ray Ventrone (hand), rookie linebacker James-Michael Johnson (ribs/oblique), offensive lineman Oniel Cousins (ankle) and linebacker Tank Carder. Bengals – cornerback Jason Allen (thigh), rookie cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick (knee), halfback Bernard Scott (hand), tight end Donald Lee (thigh), wide receiver Ryan Whalen, tight end Richard Quinn and defensive end Carlos Dunlap (knee).

Lineup changes: Browns – Dimitri Patterson will start in place of suspended cornerback Joe Haden; Buster Skrine will start in place of Sheldon Brown, who is active despite suffering a neck stinger in Week 1; and Scott Fujita will start at strongside linebacker after sitting out last week. Bengals – Robert Geathers will start in place of Dunlap; and Vontaze Burfict will start in place of Thomas Howard, who’s on injured reserve.

Top storylines: 1. Rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden and the rest of the Browns’ offense is looking for redemption after a dreadful performance in the season-opening loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. 2. The Browns’ secondary is hoping to limit Bengals standout wide receiver A.J. Green without cornerback Joe Haden, who is serving a four-game suspension for violating the NFL’s substance on performance-enhancing substances. 3. Browns rookie running back Trent Richardson is aiming to force Bengals linebacker Rey Maualuga to eat his words. Last week, Maualuga said there was “nothing spectacular” about Richardson’s NFL debut against the Eagles. 4. Browns strongside linebacker Scott Fujita is expected to play for the first time this season. His three-game suspension for his alleged role in the New Orleans Saints’ bounty scandal has been lifted, and he said he feels healthy despite dealing with an injured left knee during training camp. 5. The Browns will try to get payback after suffering two heartbreaking losses to the Bengals last season. The 78th edition of the Battle of Ohio will unfold today. The Bengals have prevailed in the past three meetings.

Preview stories via 1. The Browns are confident their offense will bounce back. 2. Matchup of the week: The Browns’ secondary vs. Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green. 3. Keys to the game. 4. Injury report. 5. Numbers of the week. 6. Predictions. 7. Quote of the week.


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