Bengals first round rookie Billy Price has been cleared medically for football activities. The timing is perfect as he now has over a month to really get right for training camp, which begins on July 26.
Bengals fans don’t have to worry about Price taking it easy over that time though, just as he did everything he could since joining the team, he’s going to do everything he can to prepare for training camp and his rookie year, too.
“I won’t be with Coach Pollack, but I’ll be doing some on-field stuff with Nick Cosgray (the Bengals’ director of rehabilitation and assistant athletic trainer,)” Price told Geoff Hobson, who writes Price will be working daily at PBS up through the start of training camp. “I’ll keep studying the playbook and try to keep getting stronger.”
Price’s drive to consistently get better is becoming apparent. He took part in every drill possible during OTAs and minicamp, not including 11-on-11 work. It was a bit surprising considering offensive line coach Frank Pollack’s individual drills are pretty demanding. Price even admits he may have gone against doctor’s orders to do what he did.
“Well, yeah, maybe,” Price said of doing more than he should have been. “But it always felt great. I didn’t feel like I overdid anything. When you think about it, being at Ohio State and then coming down here (in the middle of it), the rehab probably went as smoothly as it could have.”
No one knows your body better than yourself. At first it could be concerning to think Price was pushing himself, but as long as he never felt bad doing the drills it is hard to fault him. And, he’s now fully cleared more than a month prior to what was expected. Price has shown leadership and maybe more importantly his desire for greatness ever since stepping foot in Cincinnati following Day 1 of the NFL Draft.
The Bengals have to be relieved to have Price ready for the start of training camp. He was supposed to be recovered by then, but you can never really count out a setback for any recovery. The Bengals know that.
Cincinnati needs him to start right away as the team let Russell Bodine go to the Bills during free agency. That should be addition by subtraction as the veteran had his share of struggles for four years as the starting center for the Bengals. It is still a tall task to ask any rookie to come in right away and start, especially at a position like center. It takes plenty of work to get to that point but it’s work Price has proven he is willing to put in.
As Price settles down and unpacks in his new home, Bengals fans can rest assured they got one of the hardest working players in the draft.
Price has done nothing but try and be the best center for the Bengals since they selected him with the 21st overall pick. He has shown great intangibles, and once training camp rolls around we will get to see how well he works in the middle of the offensive line.
“I just have to keep it going,” Price said. “So far so good. I’ve got another big month to go.”