As the Cincinnati Bengals head into their bye with a 5-3 record and as obvious contenders in the AFC North, they could be without star wide receiver A.J. Green for the long haul.
Green suffered a toe injury in last week’s win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and was forced from the game. The injury itself initially didn’t seem like a big deal. Unfortunately, Green has seen swelling in said toe and will now see a specialist.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, there’s also a chance that the seven-time Pro Bowler could undergo surgery. That would likely cost Green the remainder of the 2018 season.
#Bengals star WR AJ Green was slated to visit foot specialist Dr. Robert Anderson in Green Bay during the bye, sources say, as his toe swelled up. Clarity is coming soon, with everything — day-to-day, week-to-week, surgery — on the table for Green. Big appointment.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 4, 2018
In a vacuum, this would almost undoubtedly put an end to Cincinnati’s division championship aspirations. Green has recorded 45 receptions for 686 yards and six touchdowns on the season.
He’s been Andy Dalton’s go-to-guy for some time now. Cincinnati’s blowout loss to Kansas City back in Week 7 took this to an entirely new level. Green caught seven passes for 117 yards in the 35-point defeat. Dalton completed a total of eight passes for 31 yards to everyone not named Green in the game.
Obviously, the Bengals are hoping for the best here. But given that Green’s toe has swelled up and he’s seeing a specialist, optimism is probably not the name of the game in Cincinnati.