Carson Palmer week has officially begun at Paul Brown Stadium, but the coach and players aren't saying much.
The players say coach met with the team Monday and told them not to hype the Palmer storyline. Palmer, a former top overall pick in 2003 and the team's starting quarterback, forced his way out of Cincinnati and was traded to the Oakland Raiders.
Sunday will be Palmer's first game against his old team and first game at Paul Brown Stadium since the trade.
"Carson had a good career here," said Marvin Lewis. "But, he no longer plays here, so it'll be no different than any other player who once played here and comes back. It's part of the NFL, it's part of professional sports."
Marvin Lewis says he's only connected with Palmer through text messages since the trade. The Bengals drafted Andy Dalton to replace Palmer.
"It's just another week," Dalton said Monday. "Obviously, Carson played here for a long time, but you can't worry about that. It's not the quarterbacks going against each other. We can't have any of that be a distraction."
The Bengals are 5-5 after Sunday's win in Kansas City and the Raiders are 3-7.