Palmer (broken nose) will sit out Bengals' preseason finale as precaution

Cincinnati Bengals starting quarterback Carson Palmer will not play in Thursday's preseason finale against the Indianapolis Colts.

Speaking to a group of local media after Tuesday's practice in Cincinnati, head coach Marvin Lewis said he is sitting Palmer out this week as a precaution as Palmer recovers from a broken nose he suffered in Saturday's 13-0 preseason loss to the New Orleans Saints.

"He will not play," Lewis said. "He did not practice yesterday or today, so he won't play."

Palmer said he probably would have sat out the final preseason game even if he hadn't broken his nose. He expects to be ready for the opener at Baltimore on Sept. 7.

"I mean, I'm healthy, I could play, [it's] just not in the cards this week, I think mainly because we played Saturday and turn around and play again on Thursday," said Palmer, who had a protective brace on his nose and packing in his left nostril. "I just want to be 100 percent and healthy and feeling great going into the Baltimore game."

The Bengals are expected to see the return of wide receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh and running back Rudi Johnson, Lewis said. Both players have been dealing with hamstring injuries that kept them out of the first three preseason games.

Houshmandzadeh said his hamstring felt good after his first back-to-back practices.

"My body is saying that I'm fine," Houshmandzadeh said. "I knew that, but I just had to make sure of it. I felt good. I knew I would, but there is always doubt with something like that."

With various injuries and protection problems, Cincinnati's starting offense has gone scoreless in nine straight possessions dating back to the second preseason game.

James Walker covers the NFL for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.