The West Carrollton High School football players not only got a chance to meet with Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis ahead of Monday’s Bengals practice at the school, they were the first to find out about wide receiver Marvin Jones’ broken foot.
During a question-and-answer period following his talk to the Pirates players, Lewis was asked about the health of the team, which is when he broke the news that Jones broke the fifth metatarsal in his left foot during Saturday’s practice.
Jones is expected to miss several weeks, but Lewis said after practice that he does not think the team will have to place the third-year receiver on Injured Reserve with the designation for return, a move that would sideline Jones for at least the first eight weeks of the season.
“I imagine we’ll keep him on the 53 (man roster),” Lewis said. “We don’t have to make those determinations for three and a half more weeks.”
Jones had missed the first two weeks of training camp with an ankle injury, and Saturday was his first work in 11-on-11 drills.
“Obviously he’s a huge part of what we do, but at the same I time I can’t worry about it,” offensive coordinator Hue Jackson said of Jones, who had 51 catches for 712 yards and 10 touchdowns.
“I’m not losing any sleep about it,” Jackson added. “I’d love to have him back, but we’ve got to keep moving. It’s just next man up.”
Mohamed Sanu has been in the starting spot opposite A.J. Green for most of training camp, and he likely will begin the season in that spot.
“Sanu’s been 2,” Jackson said. “I know everyone says Marvin’s 2, but I can’t say that because he hasn’t been out there. So Sanu is 2. We’ll find out who the third is.
“We’ve got some good tight ends that get involved,” he continued. “We’ve got running backs that can get involved. We’ve got all kinds of guys. We’ll do whatever it takes to keep our passing game where it needs to be.”
Defensive tackle Domata Peko missed his second consecutive practice as part of the league’s concussion protocol, while running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis was sick and stayed back in Cincinnati.
Defensive end Wallace Gilberry (leg), right tackle Andre Smith (concussion protocol), linebacker Sean Porter (knee) and quarterback Jason Campbell (elbow) also sat out practice, while cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick left early and watched the remainder of drills with ice on his left hip.
Linebacker J.K. Schaffer returned from concussion protocol for his first practice in two weeks, and left tackle Andrew Whitworth (calf) took part in his first 11-on-11 drills of camp.
“We’re getting some of the animals back,” Jackson said. “Hopefully we’ll get Andre back soon. I told these guys, we’ve got to get these guys back to playing. It’s important for those (offensive linemen) to be able to feel each other, feed off each other and then follow (quarterback Andy Dalton’s) lead. As we continue to move forward, I think it’s important to get the unit together.”
A crowd of 7,000 showed up at WCHS’ Dayton Outpatient Center Stadium to watch the practice, marking the second year in a row and third time in the last five seasons the Bengals have brought training camp north to the Dayton area.
“You’ve got to take your hat off to the equipment people and the grounds people who get it ready for us,” Lewis said. “We just show up. We don’t have to do anything different. They do a good job, the business people and the support staff, to make sure we have what we need.”
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