Lewis uses sarcasm to respond to Josesph's comments about playing for the Bengals.  (US PRESSWIRE)

Last July, in the moment when we weren't talking about the ongoing lockout, the discussion would invariably turn to where soon-to-be free agents would sign and for how much. Nnamdi Asomugha was considered the best available cornerback although we argued at the time that Johnathan Joseph might be an underrated, younger, less expensive option. The Texans agreed, signed Joseph to a long-term deal, and he proved to be an integral part to that defense's success in 2011.

Originally drafted by the Bengals in 2006, it was no surprise that Joseph was uninterested in staying put. A year ago, ESPN's John Clayton said that Joseph "would leave Cincinnati for a dollar more than the Bengals are offering."

After a season with Wade Phillips and the Texans, Joseph still sounds quite happy with his decision. In an interview this week with the Herald Online, he compared his former and current team.

"The first thing about Houston is it’s an organization run from a different perspective," he said. "In Cincy, the team lives off money it earns from football. Houston’s owner has other business interests and he controls the money. Numerous things that go on such as the way Houston interacts with my family; we’re treated in a first-class way. They helped us when my wife lost our baby daughter in a miscarriage.

"But they help with anything you ask of them because they are a very caring organization with positive attitudes about its players. In Cincy, we’re told how much Gatorade we could take home. In Houston we get what we request. You get soap and deodorant at your request. You don’t have a roommate on road trips.

During a live chat Wednesday on Cincinnati.com, Lewis was asked about Joseph's remarks.

Chad Ochocinco, Marvin Lewis is accustomed to such silliness. (Cincinnati.com)

It's no secret that the Bengals have a history of frugality. For the longest time, they had the smallest scouting department of any team in the league. This helps explain the reliance in recent years on high-upside/low-character players (which in turn played a part in Cincy leading the league in arrests from 2000-2011).

Either way, Lewis makes a good point, one that it sounds like he's had to make before. Then again, we're talking about NFL teams that clear millions in profits annually. It seems silly to put quotas on Gatorade, deodorant and soap.

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