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After the Bengals preseason Week 4 defeat of the Indianapolis Colts came the day most dreaded by players and staff alike—final cut-down day. The Bengals needed to reduce their roster by 22 players to reach the league-mandated 53 they will carry for the 2013 season, and as usual, Hard Knocks walked us through that process.
It was simple, really: If a player receivers a phone call from head coach Marvin Lewis, they made the team; if the call came from someone else on the staff, requesting that they head to the team's facilities with their iPad playbook, they are cut.
Beyond quarterback John Skelton, fullback John Conner and linebacker Bruce Taylor, the Bengals released talented vocalist and defensive tackle Terrence Stephens (the Bengals are keeping only four defensive tackles on the roster and it's the most talented position group they have).
Other cuts included tight end Bryce Davis, safety Tony Dye, tackle Reid Fragel, receiver Cobi Hamilton, running back Daniel Herron, corners T.J. Johnson, Chris Lewis-Harris, Shaun Prater and Onterio McCalebb, defensive end Dontay Moch, receivers Taveon Rogers and Roy Roundtree, linebacker J.K. Schaffer and guard John Sullen.
Some landed on the team's practice squad; others become part of the pool of available players that may or may not find a home elsewhere in the league.