The Cincinnati Bengals (1-2) are taking on the Miami Dolphins (1-2) this Thursday night in Cincinnati. As the Bengals face the Dolphins they are hopeful for the return of some key players.
Tyler Eifert, the tight end had ankle surgery in the offseason, but is rumored to be on the field soon. The Bengals website still lists Eifert as doubtful, but there are high hopes for him to hit the field.
Linebacker Vontaze Burfict is off of his three-game suspension.Bengals coach Marvin Lewis remained noncommittal on Tuesday when discussing Burfict’s playing status for the Dolphins. He mentions that there would be a roster move to open a spot for him, regardless.
The suspension for Burfict resulted from multiple violations of rules regarding player safety. This includes a blow to Steelers receiver Antonio Brown’s head, which set up the field goal that resulted in the Bengals 18-16 loss to the Steelers.
Getting Burfict back would help strengthen the Bengals defense that was battered by the Broncos last week. Cincinnati gave up five first downs to the Broncos last week just in penalties.
Burfict’s replacement, Vincent Rey has also been proved to be a core player. Rey started eight games last season. Lewis mentions his ability to contribute in spot duty and far beyond.
Turn to the Dolphins, who are struggling with running the ball. With injuries at running back and shuffling on the offensive line where Pro-Bowl center Mike Pouncey has been out with a hip injury. The Dolphins are ranked 26th in third down conversions. Miami head coach Adam Gase blames the inability to move the ball on first downs.
The Dolphins offensive line is likely to have its challenges tonight due to multiple injuries. Left tackle Branden Albert is listed as questionable due to an ankle injury. Pouncey’s back up, Anthony Steen is listed as doubtful after he hurt his ankle against the Browns. Tight end Jordan Cameron is out this game due to a concussion.
The game starts this Thursday at 8:25 PM EST. The Dolphins have won three straight meetings with the Bengals so far.