The Cincinnati Bengals took yet another big hit this week after likely losing star wide receiver A.J. Green for the season due to an expected surgery on torn ligaments in his toe, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter. The surgery is expected to sideline Green for 3-4 months, but he’s expected to be ready for next season.
Green was carted off the field in tears on Sunday after apparently re-injuring his foot on a non-contact play. It was Green’s first game back from a toe injury that had kept him out since Week 8. While it wasn’t initially considered a major injury, it has clearly haunted Green and the Bengals.
Bengals' WR A.J. Green is expected to undergo season-ending surgery on the torn ligaments in his toe that will sideline him 3-4 months, but he is expected to have a full recovery and be ready for OTAs, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 4, 2018
How did A.J. Green get this injury?
Green first went down with the toe injury in Week 8 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, when he left the game late with an apparent toe injury. It wasn’t thought to be a serious injury — and it had a convenient amount of time to heal thanks to a bye week after the game — but Green was later seen in a walking boot.
The injury continued to nag Green in the following weeks to the point he had to see a foot specialist. The injury wasn’t believed to require surgery at the time, but it still kept Green out until this past Sunday.
Green had been limited early last week in practice, but he was later taken off the injury report and given the green light. Green recorded a single seven-yard reception against the Broncos before re-injuring the toe.
Where does this leave the Bengals?
Suffice to say, the Bengals aren’t in a great position right now.
Marvin Lewis’ squad has lost six of its last seven overall and without quarterback Andy Dalton, who was placed on injured reserve last week with a torn ligament in his right thumb. Back-up Jeff Driskel didn’t inspire confidence against the Broncos, going 25-of-37 for 236 yards with a touchdown, interception and a lost fumble.
The Bengals still have talented No. 2 receiver Tyler Boyd, but no other pass-catcher exceeded 35 receiving yards last week.
The team now sits in third place in the AFC North at 5-7, is missing two of its most important players and seems more likely to get passed by the last-place Cleveland Browns than catch the second-place Baltimore Ravens. It’s hard to imagine this season ending well for Lewis, who is widely believed to be on the hot seat.
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