UPDATE: It looks like nothing is wrong with Geno Atkins, who has now shown up to practice, albeit quite late:
Geno Atkins just came out, in uniform with helmet. #Bengals— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) June 13, 2018
It’s odd Atkins has his helmet now (at 3:26 p.m. ET) since practice started at 2, but either way, it’s good to see there’s nothing wrong and he’s now out with the team.
The Bengals are back on the field this week for the final phase of OTAs, as mandatory minicamp takes place in the Queen City.
Wednesday saw some big-time players either limited or sidelined, including Geno Atkins.
No Geno Atkins out here today. Was here all offseason and first day of camp yesterday.— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) June 13, 2018
It’s unclear why Atkins was not present Wednesday after being at Tuesday’s session. There hasn’t been any reported injury with him to this point. He’s entering a contract year, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if this had something to do with it.
Perhaps the Bengals gave him the day off since he’s been here for offseason workouts to this point. After all, Atkins and the Bengals can’t allow him to be injured in an offseason workout. He’s now 30 and likely about to sign his last big NFL contract, though it’s unclear if that will be an extension with the Bengals this year.
Despite his age, Atkins has continued to play at an All-Pro level for the Bengals, and there’s no reason to think he won’t continue that for at least one more season in Cincinnati.
The team is working to get new contracts done for Atkins and Carlos Dunlap. Ideally, both will be completed before the start of the regular season, but there’s a real chance one of them doesn’t get done and has to play out 2018 under the final year of their deal.
While Atkins was absent, Tyler Eifert made his return to the practice field following his mysterious Tuesday disappearance.
Bengals back on the field this afternoon including Tyler Eifert who was not participating yesterday pic.twitter.com/sfIBw0il0k— Terry Helmer (@TerryHelmerWCPO) June 13, 2018
Tyler Eifert out here today but no helmet, so he won’t be participating— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) June 13, 2018
Eifert was riding a bike on the side during open media portion.— Jeremy Rauch (@FOX19Jeremy) June 13, 2018
That would suggest Eifert has some minor issue that isn’t anything to worry about in terms of his availability for the start of training camp.
As for the rest of the injured Bengals, it was more of the same guys sitting out after missing Tuesday’s session as well.
Not participating to some degree: Tyler Eifert, Devonte Boyd, Justin Murray, TJ Johnson, Tra Carson, Tyler Kroft, Darius Phillips, Josh Shaw.#Bengals— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) June 13, 2018
Johnson, Carson and Kroft have now been sidelined for several weeks, though it remains as a mystery as to what’s keeping them sidelined. Hopefully it’s nothing major and they’ll be ready for Day 1 of training camp. both Kroft and Johnson are entering contract years, while Carson has his work cut out for him just to make the practice squad with so many running backs currently on the roster.
Shaw was sidelined with his shoulder wrapped up on Tuesday, so it appears that issue is still plaguing him. Hopefully it’s nothing major, as he too is entering a contract year and isn’t a lock to make the 53-man roster.
Philips, who left Tuesday’s session early, had some knee discomfort and should be fine.
#Bengals rookie corner Darius Phillips, who exited yesterday’s mini-camp early with some knee discomfort, should be OK.— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) June 13, 2018
The Bengals have one more practice on Thursday before heading into a summer break until training camp. If they can make it through that day with no injuries, they’ll have made it through OTAs with no reported major injuries.
That would be a nice win, as many NFL teams have already lost players to major injuries in offseason workouts.