Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict may or may not practice this week. How is that for some self-assurances? "I don't know," said head coach Marvin Lewis, who was asked if Burfict will be able to work this week. "He’s kind of day-to-day, and we'll see how he goes."
If he misses Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, it will be the sixth straight game that he's missed since arthroscopic knee surgery in late October. Over the weekend, one observer noted that he was "still slightly hobbled", and prior to Sunday's game in Tampa Bay, Burfict "didn't look (to be) in condition to play" and...that he was "laboring a little" through some of the pre-game drills. Of course he's recovering from knee surgery... his conditioning (if that was the emphasis of that point) will need some work. But the initial timeline wasn't expected to be this long.
Following Cincinnati's 27-24 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Oct. 26, the team found "something floating in his knee". Burfict said that the injury happened in the first quarter, but thought it was only a bruise. Burfict underwent arthroscopic surgery on Oct. 27. The team announced that Burfict will miss a couple of weeks but could have a shot against the New Orleans Saints.
"What you are talking about is something that can float in there but the problem is if it locks in the joint then your leg locks or also the fact if you leave it in there and you continue to try to play which is what his initial thought was you can do some further damage," head coach Marvin Lewis said via the Cincinnati Enquirer.
"You don't want to do that. When the adrenaline is going and things like that unless it's in the joint it's fine the problem is you don't want it to get stuck in the joint and cause issue. That's why the best thing to do is to bite the bullet right now and get it removed and get him back rehabbing and get him healthy for the rest of the way."
Like any other week, a lot will be determined by how (and if) he practices on Wednesday.