Monday brought about a bevy of good news for the Cincinnati Bengals, at least on the injury front.
For the first time this preseason, rookie wide receiver John Ross was able to get a full practice in, which included one-on-one and 11-on-11 work. Ross had been limited to just individual drills thus far while recovering from offseason shoulder surgery, but it looks like he’s full speed ahead now.
Ross beat Will Jackson on deep ball in 1 on 1s. #Bengals— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) August 14, 2017
First round pick John Ross working in 11-on-11 drills. He took a reverse on this play. #Bengals pic.twitter.com/RhznPfHjnV— James Rapien (@JamesRapien) August 14, 2017
One observer after Ross catches a quick out: can't stop it. He's too fast— Geoff Hobson (@GeoffHobsonCin) August 14, 2017
The defense appears to have gotten good news, too, theirs in regards to Carl Lawson, who was able to suit up after sustaining a shoulder injury in the preseason opener.
#Bengals rookie linebacker Carl Lawson is in pads today but not thudding up/hitting the sleds on that shoulder.— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) August 14, 2017
It was originally reported that Lawson suffered a shoulder injury Friday that could sideline him this week. While it looks like he’s still limited, Lawson being able to suit up means it probably isn’t a significant issue that will cost him much time. He may sit out from the next preseason game, but should return to live action soon after if he does.
More potentially good news came as Cody Core was seen without crutches as he recovers from a lower-body injury.
#Bengals WR Cody Core left PBS on Friday on crutches, but is off them today as he watches from the side.— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) August 14, 2017
Core was unable to practice, but it’s good to see he’s already shed the crutches he was seen with on Friday after the game. His ankle was wrapped and crutches were by his locker following Friday’s preseason win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
George Iloka, C.J. Uzomah, Keivarae Russell joined Core as sideline observers for Monday’s practice.
WR Cody Core among #Bengals not practicing today. Others: Iloka, Uzomah. @Local12 pic.twitter.com/sN2bYog8CZ— Richard Skinner (@Local12Skinny) August 14, 2017
KeiVarae Russell, who ran off the field early Friday, is not suited up today for the #Bengals— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) August 14, 2017
Uzomah is recovering from an ankle injury, while Iloka is rehabbing a hyperextended knee suffered on the third day of training camp. It looks like both could be back for Week 1 of the regular season, though Uzomah’s outlook is less clear.
It’s unknown what Russell is dealing with after leaving Friday’s game with less than two minutes remaining and jogging back to the locker room. He had a good showing in the preseason opener as he looks to secure a roster spot. He’s in prime position for the sixth cornerback spot, but the Bengals could decide to just keep five cornerbacks, so Russell still has a lot of work to do. An injury could cripple his chances if he misses significant time.
The Bengals had Andre Smith present for Monday’s session after he didn’t play Friday, despite being dressed for the game.
#Bengals OL Andre Smith is in pads today, with a brace in his right arm.— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) August 14, 2017
Smith has been battling an elbow tightness, so perhaps Cincinnati wanted to play it safe and not injure it further in a preseason game. Smith is in a hard-fought battle with Trey Hopkins to be the starting right guard this season.
Some bad injury news that came Monday was Tra Carson leaving practice with a lower-body injury.
#Bengals RB Tra Carson sitting on a cart with ice on his left foot/ankle.— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) August 14, 2017
The second-year running back spent last year on the practice squad, but he looked like someone worthy of a 53-man roster spot on Friday. Let’s hope this injury isn’t serious, as he looks like a true contender for that fourth running back spot.
Earlier Monday, the Bengals activated Cedric Peerman off the NFI list. He’s been there since the start of training camp but now that he’s back, the veteran special teams ace is expected to retain his roster spot as the fourth running back. Though, that would mean there’s not room for Carson.
That means Cincinnati’s expected four running backs on the 53-man roster — Giovani Bernard, Jeremy Hill, Joe Mixon and Peerman — are all practicing now.
Elsewhere, Adam Jones reportedly went down, but was quickly back up and said he was good.
Adam Jones came up limping after a play earlier and now has his pads off so his day is done.— Katherine Terrell (@Kat_Terrell) August 14, 2017
Adam Jones no issues walking off the field -says he feels good. Can't wait to tackle for first time this season. #Bengals— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) August 14, 2017
While the Bengals got mostly good news on the injury front, the news wasn’t so kind with the actual practice that commenced. It was reportedly a debacle for the offense, which featured the offensive line being a hot mess:
Last 11s session had 10 plays. Counted 5 sacks (Rey 2, Fejedelem, Burfict, S.Williams), a pick 6 (Dre) and a false start. #Bengals— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) August 14, 2017
The offense has really stunk today. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯— Katherine Terrell (@Kat_Terrell) August 14, 2017
That 11x11 period for the offense was so bad you'd think they didn't just play days ago. But hey! Good plays by the defense?— Katherine Terrell (@Kat_Terrell) August 14, 2017
Let’s just hope the offensive struggles are because the Bengals’ defense has found a way to become the 1985 Bears.