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Miller's Minute: Burfict's leadership role

Cincinnati Bengals Linebacker Vontaze Burfict, Photo Date: 7/29/13 (Navin Rajagopalan / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0/ MGN)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Vontaze Burfict and A.J. Green... what do they have in common? Obviously, both are Bengals, on opposite sides of the ball, opposite personalities and reputations.

Both have recent ejections, and both are considered fortunate not to be suspended. After Green's throw-down and punch fest with Jalen Ramsey, the Pro Bowl WR stood his 6-foot-four frame up and answered every question about his uncharacteristic actions, and took full responsibility for how it hurt his team and how he has to be better than to let an opposing player get under his skin.

By contrast, Burfict, also a Pro Bowl player, has yet to speak on what got him ejected Sunday in Nashville, even though he had plenty to say to fans and taunters on his way off the Nissan Stadium field. Head Coach Marvin Lewis tends to brush off Burfict's antics, although this time, even he acknowledged his linebacker has to be smarter and that he hurt the team.

That was a common expression in the locker room: 'It hurt'. Whether the target on Vontaze's back is fair, he's certainly gone out of his way to earn it. Since so many of his teammates turn to him for leadership, it's time for Burfict to show some and not leave explaining his behavior to his teammates.



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