CINCINNATI -- Chad Ochocinco is working on a tweet surprise for the NFL.
The Cincinnati Bengals' outspoken wide receiver promised something new for Sunday's season opener against the Denver Broncos at Paul Brown Stadium. What exactly? He wouldn't say. But it's likely to draw a review from the NFL, which has banned players' use of social networks during games.
Ochocinco believes he has found a way around it.
"The Twitter world, they don't need a signal," he said Wednesday. "They'll know. It's the quiet before the storm. Just watch."
Leave it to Ochocinco to try an end-around.
Ochocinco became immersed in social networking sites during the offseason, enjoying the chance to connect with fans. A company formed by backup Bengals quarterback Jordan Palmer and two of his California friends has designed an iPhone application for Ochocinco. The company, Rock Software, Inc., is awaiting approval for the app, which would include a Twitter feed.
Perhaps that's part of the plan.
Near the end of training camp, the league established guidelines for using Twitter, Facebook and other social networks. Players, coaches and football operations personnel can use them for up to 90 minutes before kickoff and again after they've done media interviews following the game.
The league said that no player or anyone representing him can provide in-game updates on the player's personal Twitter, Facebook or other networking accounts.
But Ochocinco, who is one of the most prolific tweeters among NFL players, has something up his sleeve.
"I've been really, really quiet, and there's a storm coming Sunday," he said. "That's one of the things that I do when I'm back: I have something. I keep you on the edge of your seat.
"NFL, I would like to apologize to you guys early. I understand. I read all the fine print in the letters you sent, but I did find loopholes. I found loopholes."
Ochocinco has done numerous Ustream episodes and tweeted voluminously during the offseason.
Ochocinco tried to scoop the media on the Bengals signing first-round draft pick Andre Smith, tweeting that a deal was done. Smith's agent then tweeted that the report was premature -- the offensive tackle wound up signing one day later. Ochocinco got his picture taken with Smith in the locker room and posted it.
The league's directives seemed to cut into one of Ochocinco's planned ventures: tweets on game days. At one point, Ochocinco suggested he could get fans to post for him, taking their cue from signals he provided on the field. The NFL's directive ruled that out, too.
Last week, Ochocinco posted on his Twitter feed: "Due to the many rules the NFL has made I've found it difficult to enjoy Twitter and I'll be deleting my account :(" He hasn't tweeted on his OGOchoCinco account since last Friday.
"Just the calm before the storm," he said.
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press