In what was a game many expected the Bengals to win easier than the last-second thriller we saw, the Bengals suffered several costly injuries to key players on defense.
The biggest names were defensive end Trey Hendrickson and defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi, who combined to make one of the game’s biggest players when Hendrickson strip-sacked Derek Carr, and Ogunjobi recovered it in Raiders territory, leading to a key field goal in a game that was decided by just seven points.
Unfortunately, both players left the game in the third quarter, and it was painfully clear their presence was missed as the Raiders nearly rallied from a double-digit deficit to hand the Bengals yet another playoff heartbreak.
Thankfully, that didn’t happen, but the Bengals may be missing both players next week in the Divisional Round of the NFL playoffs.
Sunday, head coach Zac Taylor gave several injury updates, including backup defensive tackle Mike Daniels, who left in the first quarter with a groin injury and never returned.
Defensive tackle is already a thin spot with Josh Tupou working his way back from an MCL injury suffered in Week 18.
Even practice squad defensive tackle Renell Wren is banged up, so this is quickly become a position of concern.
DT Josh Tupou (week-to-week with MCL injury) has “a chance.” He didn’t practice last week.— Charlie Goldsmith (@CharlieG__) January 16, 2022
DE Trey Hendrickson is in concussion protocol.
Zac Taylor says Larry Ogunjobi has a foot injury, still be evaluated. Trey Hendrickson in concussion protocol and eval begins Tuesday. Mike Daniels is not looking like he'll be back next week. Renell Wren still working his way back. Possible they add interior lineman.— Mike Petraglia (@Trags) January 16, 2022
The fact that Hendrickson is in the concussion protocol makes it seem unlikely he’ll play in the Divisional Round, though it’s not unheard of for players to be concussed and return to game action within a week.
As for Ogunjobi, it’s good to see this doesn’t look like a severe injury. Seeing him carted off the field was hard to watch, especially when you remember he’s playing on a one-year deal. A major injury requiring months of rehab would nuke his stock heading into NFL free agency, but it appears he avoided such an injury.
Look for the Bengals to add another defensive lineman to the roster this coming week.
Zac Taylor meets with the media. https://t.co/pa8ZtM8J8S— Cincinnati Bengals (@Bengals) January 16, 2022