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Palmer says Ochocinco needed now

CINCINNATI — Carson Palmer says receiver Chad Ochocinco’s decision to skip voluntary offseason workouts is making it tough for the rest of the Cincinnati Bengals to get their offense together.

Ochocinco doesn’t want to hear it.

Palmer told reporters after a workout on Thursday that other receivers have to fill Ochocinco’s role during the voluntary practices, which throws things out of whack. Cincinnati has a bevy of new receivers this season, including free agent Antonio Bryant.

Ochocinco customarily spends the offseason out of town working out on his own. He’s been on “Dancing With the Stars” in Los Angeles and is working on a dating show for cable television. He’s required to be in Cincinnati next week for a minicamp.

The Bengals have made changes in the passing game, which struggled last season. They’re also trying to figure out where the newcomers fit.

“It would be great to have our No. 1 receiver here and working him and building it around him,” Palmer said. “We’ve tried moving guys around. Maybe they’re trying to find a new No. 1 receiver because it’s hard to work your offense in without that guy around. We’ve moved Antonio (Bryant) around, he’s been playing some spots.

“It’s hard to tell and say because we’re looking for a No. 2 and (No.) 3 receiver without a No. 1.”