CINCINNATI -- The Bengals introduced a new form of competition during their OTAs this week.
During team drills, either the offense or defense got a point for each play they "won." The losing side had to do push-ups.
The offense ended the first period of team drills on a high note, when quarterback Andy Dalton found Alex Erickson wide open down the sideline in what looked like a blown assignment by the defense. But it was the offense doing push-ups after that segment, likely after some earlier drops by the receivers.
"Drops are disappointing. Balls thrown off marks are disappointing. Not blocking whoever is disappointing," said Bengals offensive coordinator Ken Zampese. "But I was real excited about the young guys and the progress they're making and the things they're doing offensively. There's always going to be good and bad."
It was the defense doing push-ups on the last set of team drills. Cornerback KeiVarae Russell swatted away Dalton's pass to Erickson in the end zone, but tight end Mason Schreck got in for the score a few plays later, giving the win to the offense.
"Coach started counting wins and losses through a period, so it brings a focus and a heightened awareness to it because everybody's competitive," Zampese said. "When you make a competition more public, the better you get out of each guy. You get more focus out of each guy. It was a good thing. It was fun."
Bullock, Elliott in tight battle: Kickers Randy Bullock and Jake Elliott made all four of their kicks during Tuesday's practice. Both were good from 40, 37, 48 and 44 yards. Bullock and Elliott also made all four of their kicks during last Tuesday's practice, which was open to the media. The Bengals say they have been rotating their three kickers during each practice of OTAS. Jonathan Brown sat out Tuesday.
Plays of the day: Clayton Fejedelem had two notable pass breakups. He batted away Jeff Driskel's pass intended for tight end Schreck during team drills. ... Tyler Boyd made a diving catch for a touchdown. ... Russell went high and swatted away a pass intended for Erickson in the corner of the end zone.
Injuries: Andre Smith was back at practice after missing the open practice last week with an illness. ... Pat Sims, Tyler Eifert, AJ McCarron and John Ross were not in attendance. Ross is scheduled to return from school next week during minicamp. Rookies Carl Lawson and Josh Malone watched practice but did not participate. C.J. Uzomah and Giovani Bernard worked on the rehab field.
ETC.: The Bengals worked on kickoff returns on Tuesday, with rookie Joe Mixon back to return some kicks. ... Former Bengals wideout and Ohio native Chris Collinsworth was in attendance at practice. ... Nick Vigil, Vontaze Burfict and Kevin Minter were working together again in base defense, as they have been for most of OTAs. ... The Bengals have a team bonding function planned following OTAs, with the team split into two. Dalton, Geno Atkins and Cedric Peerman were the captain of one side, while A.J. Green, Clint Boling and Vincent Rey were the captains of the other side.
"We’re splitting up into two teams and we’re going to do a bunch of different activities here, one will be basketball, an obstacle course, a couple of things that we’ll have this competition between everybody," Dalton said. "I think it’s team bonding and it’s fun for everyone too because you’re competing, cheering your guys on. It makes it fun and it’s kind of a good end to OTAs."