Tonight’s Cincinnati Bengals inactive list is an indignant indictment.
Brian Hill is active; John Ross is not.
Yes, you read that right.
Ross, the No. 9 overall pick in the draft, will be on the sidline in street clothes watching Hill, an undrafted rookie whom the Bengals signed off the Atlanta practice squad 20 days ago, try to help the Bengals win tonight’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, one that will either keep Cincinnati’s playoff hopes alive or all but squash them.
This will be the 10th time in 13 games Ross has been inactive, while Hill will dress for the second time in three games. He also was active Nov. 19 at Denver while Ross was inactive. Both players were inactive last week against Cleveland.
The big news for the Pittsburgh Steelers is that Pro Bowl wide receiver Antonio Brown, who was questionable with a toe injury, is active.
The other Bengals inactives are linebackers Vinny Rey (hamstring) and Nick Vigil (ankle) and safety Shawn Williams (hamstring) — each of whom were ruled out Saturday — along with three healthy scratches in cornerback KeiVarae Russell and offensive linemen Christian Westerman and Alex Redmond.
Russell is a bit of a surprise with Williams inactive and his past contributions on special teams, including a blocked field goal at Denver when he played 13 snaps on special teams while Hill played nine.
Rookie sixth-round pick Jordan Evans is expected to start for Vigil, while Clayton Fejedelem is expected to start for Williams.
The other inactives for the Steelers are cornerback Joe Haden (fibula) and tight end Vance McDonald (ankle), who were ruled out Saturday, along with safety Mike Mitchell, quarterback Josh Dobbs, linebacker James Harrison, nose tackle Daniel McCullers and tackle Matt Feiler.