Suddenly, the once-deep wide receiver group of the Cincinnati Bengals is looking a little thin. Their star and face of the franchise, A.J. Green tweaked his knee in the first practice of Training Camp and looks unlikely to play in the preseason opener against the Atlanta Falcons. Now, there is an issue with Andrew Hawkins.
The speedy slot man and gadget guy for the Bengals went down with a left ankle injury after making a spectacular grab on a deep pass from quarterback Andy Dalton. The local media, including our own Andrew Miller who is in attendance at practice, confirmed the story.
Hawkins grabs ankle after makes diving catch— Geoff Hobson (@GeoffHobsonCin) August 1, 2013
Hawkins caught a spectacular 55+ yard pass from Dalton and rolled. Realized he couldn't get up. Staff attended, assisted off— Andrew Miller (@AndrewFoxMiller) August 1, 2013
Good throw by Dalton. Great catch as Hawk laid out— Geoff Hobson (@GeoffHobsonCin) August 1, 2013
Paul Dehner, Jr. with The Cincinnati Enquirer noted that Hawkins was actually carted off of the field, but no one else has confirmed that report as of yet.
Andrew Hawkins goes down after diving catch holding left ankle. Helped off and leaves on a cart.— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) August 1, 2013
Aside from being a valuable player to the offense, Hawkins is a big time contributor on special teams as a gunner on punt coverages. He's one of the fastest players on the team and is a mismatch nightmare for opposing defenses.
We'll update you more as we hear the extent of the injury, though being carted off of the field, usually isn't a good sign. Cross your fingers and/or knock on some nearby wood that this is a minor issue.