The Cincinnati Bengals wrapped up minicamp on Thursday with one final practice before summer break begins.
We won’t see the entire team back in Cincinnati until training camp begins in the final week of July. By then, the Bengals hope to have most of their injured players able to return to on-field action.
That includes Tyler Eifert and Giovani Bernard, both of whom were present on Thursday. While both players have yet be cleared for on-field work, the hope is they’ll return at some point in training camp.
Eifert is recovering from back surgery that could sideline him into training camp, though the hope is he’ll be cleared by Day 1. Seeing him consistently on the rehab field in OTAs and now minicamp has been good to see. He’s one of the two or three best tight ends in the game when healthy, and he could be the difference between another losing season and the playoffs.
Bernard is still recovering from a torn ACL suffered in November, which could sideline him for a few regular-season games, though the team hopes he can resume practicing sometime during camp. It looks like he’ll avoid going on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list if he does in fact practice at any point during camp or the preseason.
A newly injured Bengal to emerge is Cody Core. The second-year wide receiver is battling a left leg injury suffered Wednesday, which is not believed to be serious:
Talked to Cody in the locker room. He said he's fine. It just got stepped on. Will be ready for training camp. https://t.co/udhBnBSW1Q— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) June 15, 2017
Core is expected to get healed up during the next five weeks before training camp opens. He’s battling for one of the final receiver spots, though all early reports prior to his injury indicate he’s doing extremely well in OTAs and minicamp.
Rookie defensive back Brandon Wilson and undrafted running back Jarveon Williams were out again Wednesday as both look to heal up before camp next month.
Eifert, Gio doung side rehab work for first time in minicamp. Brandon Wilson, Jarvein Williams on bikes. #Bengals— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) June 15, 2017
Brandon Wilson (knee) & Jarveon Williams (undisclosed) are out of practice again today. As is Cody Core (leg). #Bengals— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) June 15, 2017
Fifth-round rookie center J.J. Dielman still hasn’t been cleared to resume practicing yet, though he’s expected to be cleared for training camp. Dielman hasn't been discussed much since he's been healing from a major foot injury for nearly 10 months.
That’s going to make his chances of making the roster very interesting. Even though he’s a fifth-round pick, his spot is far from locked up, and he’s probably going to be rusty once he returns to football action.
For the most part, Wednesday was an uneventful day that didn’t produce any real news, which is good news. About the only kind of stories that can emerge from offseason workouts are injury related, so seeing the Bengals make it through OTAs and minicamp with nothing serious is great to see.
With offseason workouts having wrapped up, what were your biggest takeaways from them?