After five full practices, the Bengals got an off day Monday at just the right time. With several players still on the Active Physically Unable to Perform list, it gave the team a chance to determine who was fit to return to action once the team did so on Wednesday.
It was a big one, as All-Pro defensive tackle Geno Atkins was taken off the list, marking the end of his nearly 10-month rehab process after tearing his ACL vs the Miami Dolphins last year.
The year as a whole may go down as one to forget for Atkins, after he tore his ACL in Week 9, but he's still regarded as one of the best defensive lineman in football. He finished '13 with six sacks, 20 QB hurries and nine tackles.
His last full season came in 2012, an All-Pro season, after he led all NFL interior linemen in sacks with 12.5, which was third-most in franchise history. Atkins was also selected to a second straight Pro Bowl for his '12 performance, and was voted a starter for the first time.
Rookie linebacker Marquis Flowers was also activated Wednesday. The sixth-round draft pick out of Arizona is expected to compete for one of the final LB spots on the 53-man roster, but could be a candidate for the practice squad.
This past season, Flowers registered 93 tackles and 11 tackles for loss to go with one sack, a pair of fumble recoveries and an interception returned for a touchdown.