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Eifert: Bengals-Steelers animosity ‘was boiling all season’

Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis has been adamant about the need for the team to bury the past, but three and a half months after the 18-16 wild-card loss to Pittsburgh, that game is still a hot topic of conversation among media, fans and even the players themselves.

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“It’s not stuff that we would want to lag on like that, but given the circumstances it’s not surprising,” Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert said Monday. “It was boiling all season long with the different things that were happening in the regular-season game with us and them. So it’s not surprising, especially the way the game ended and just emotions running high and all that stuff.”

Quarterback Andy Dalton admitted the 2016 schedule release last week caught his eye when he saw the Bengals would be facing the Steelers in Week 2 without linebacker Vontaze Burfict, whose unnecessary roughness penalty for a hit against Antonio Brown has been the epicenter of the discussion this offseason. Burfict was suspended by the NFL for the first three games.

“The scheduling is what it is,” Dalton said. “Other guys are going to have to step in and play. We’ve been there before.”