The Cincinnati Bengals held their first playoff practice of 2016 on Tuesday in what was a fairly light session.
The team practiced in just sweats for what amounted to a walk-through practice. That means we won't be able to get a good read on any injured Bengals until they get a full session in on Wednesday.
However, there was still big news to come from Tuesday's session as it was the first day in almost a month that Andy Dalton was at practice without a cast on his injured thumb. It's still looking unlikely that he plays this Saturday, and head coach Marvin Lewis said Tuesday that the team is preparing for AJ McCarron to start.
AJ Green comes out to the field "Andy has his cast off! Andy has his cast off everybody!" Haha— Elise Jesse (@Elise_JesseWLWT) January 5, 2016
#Bengals players quite amused by crush of media waiting for Dalton at practice. Lots of jokes. Loose group.— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) January 5, 2016
Team clapped as Andy Dalton took two snaps during open media time. He did throw a pass...jokingly with his left hand.— Joe Danneman (@FOX19Joe) January 5, 2016
Well played, Andy Dalton. Took a couple snaps at practice -- both a handoff and a throw... Left-handed. #Bengals— Kaci Kust (@KaciKustCN2) January 5, 2016
Re: the 2 plays Andy Dalton had during practice, nothing to read into other than him having some fun. Did no actual throwing while prac open— Coley Harvey (@ColeyHarvey) January 5, 2016
However, Lewis would not reveal if Dalton would be healthy enough to be the backup Saturday in the event McCarron were to be injured. While Dalton is probably not ready to start and lead the Bengals to a playoff win, he's still probably more capable of doing so than Keith Wenning, who was just on the practice squad a month ago.
Another notable player who is dealing with an injury is starting fullback/h-back Ryan Hewitt. He missed this past week's game against the Ravens with a knee injury that prompted the Bengals to move rookie offensive tackle Jake Fisher to h-back. Fisher did well against the Ravens, but having Hewitt back would be ideal.
As far as injuries that occurred during Sunday's win over the Baltimore Ravens, starting linebacker Emmanuel Lamur is out for the year after suffering a knee injury. He's already been placed on I.R., and rookie linebacker Trevor Roach has been promoted from the practice squad in his place.
Other than that, there weren't any notable developments to come out of Tuesday's session since everyone was in sweats and without helmets. It is good news though that everyone on the 53-man roster seemed to be on the field.
Be sure to check back later for the full practice and injury report for the Bengals.