CINCINNATI - Bengals' players may use up to 18 pairs of shoes each season. Each pair endures the battle wounds of a hard fought war. but they aren't the only part of the Bengal uniform that feel the stress of the game.
One only has to see the scars that rip across the Bengals' helmets to know this isn't a game for the weak. In a small workshop, behind the Bengals' locker room, a team of equipment experts perform riveting work.
"The biggest thing that we are in charge of here is helmet - safety. Safety for the players and the helmet safety probably is primarily the number one thing," said Bengals Equipment Manager, Jeff Brickner.
On Mondays after the game, the striped shells are scrutinized for snags.
"First you look to see that the snap is on the buckle. When it locks in there, it really snaps tight. So many helmets come off during the games and we want to make sure that's going to buckle in there very tight," Brickner explained.
The shells have a four-to-five week season before being benched.
"That's when it gets sent back to Rydell."
They get re-certified plus repainted.
When it comes to the shoes, they say the important thing is to make sure that the foot is stabilized in the shoes and that may be all the way from the heel to the forefoot of the shoe.
ALSO ON THE CINCINNATI LIST:
Also making our list is the petting zoo at the Cincinnati Hamilton County Public Library. It's not that kind of petting zoo, but one for eReaders.
Are you thinking about buying an eReader or tablet as a gift, but you're not sure which one to buy. Stop by the public library's eReader petting zoo for a test drive.
"We have the iPad, The Kindle Fire, Barnes and Noble Nook and things like that. Customers can come in and interact with them and talk to knowledgeable staff who are used to providing service for these devices," said Christian Sheehy, Tech Center Manager of the Cincinnati Public Library.
You can even compare the differences by reading through the library's eReader and tablet comparison guide.
"If you want to do more than just eReading you should consider the tablet. With the tablet you have internet. You can watch movies. You can do much, much more," explained Brad Wedig of the Cincinnati Public Library.
The first petting zoo will take place tomorrow at 7 p.m. at the Walnut Hills Branch.
The library has a list of all the locations for the eReader Petting Zoo on its website at www.cincinnatilibrary.org.