It's likely that the Indianapolis Colts were hoping to stash rookie running back Clifton Dawson onto their practice squad, but the Cincinnati Bengals headed them off at the pass and claimed the former Harvard star to add to their 53-man roster.
In addition to the 5-foot-10, 212-pound rookie running back who averaged 4.0 yards per carry during the preseason, the Bengals also claimed off of waivers the Jets' third-round pick in the 2006 draft, linebacker Anthony Schlegel, and the Saints' fifth-round pick in this year's draft, cornerback David Jones.
With just three backs on their active roster -- Joseph Addai, former CFL player Kenton Keith and fullback Luke Lawton -- it was likely that the Colts would have added Dawson to their practice squad. Second-year running back DeDe Dorsey was waived/injured on Saturday and may be heading for the team's reserved/injured list.
In addition to obviously being impressed by Dawson, Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis is also (perhaps coincidentally) extracting some revenge from the Colts with the waiver claim. Last year, Dorsey was a promising rookie in the Bengals' camp that they reportedly had hoped to move onto their practice squad, but the Colts claimed him off of waivers and added him to their active roster last September.
The move leaves the Colts in a situation where they'll have to find a running back out of Saturday's cuts that they can sign either to the active roster or to their practice squad who won't have had the benefit of any experience with the offense this summer.