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John Ross recovers from life-threatening injury

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The injury that put Ross on IR was more serious than most realized.

Cincinnati Bengals v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images

John Ross is getting ready to play his first game in two months, but things could have ended differently for him.

Ross said that the sternoclavicular joint in his chest came about an inch away from puncturing an artery in the Week 4 loss in Pittsburgh.

“I asked him ‘could it be life-threatening?’ And he said ‘definitely,’” Ross said, according to ESPN. “He said it was a couple inches off or something like that from hitting the artery. I didn’t want to know any more after that. I said ‘as long as you fix me, I’m fine.’”

Ross spoke with Darqueze Dennard, who suffered a similar injury last year. Dennard told him that was normal to feel pain whenever he stood up, and that the bone had to heal on its own.

While it didn’t take the full nine weeks to heal, Ross still had to spend that time on the sideline because he was placed on injured reserve. During his mandatory eight-game rest, he was cleared to practice and started taking reps with the scout team.

He’s ready to resume his pivotal role in this offense.

“It’s hard to put things in perspective, because it’s been so much time,” Ross said. “I definitely feel I can contribute, and I definitely will put my best foot forward to go out there and do everything I can to help us win.”

Head coach Zac Taylor is ready to have him back and produce some offense for this team. In four games, Ross already has 328 receiving yards on 16 receptions. He had 210 yards on 21 receptions a year ago.

“He’s roaring and ready to get back at it,” Taylor said.