NFL News and Rumors

Bengals Defense Suffers Major Injury Blow

Tyler Maher
The Cincinnati Bengals' defense suffered a devastating blow after losing a key player to injury.
The Cincinnati Bengals' defense suffered a devastating blow after losing a key player to injury. / ASSOCIATED PRESS
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While the Miami Dolphins have been getting mostly positive injury news ahead of their Week 4 showdown with the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday Night Football, the Bengals received some pretty bad injury news leading up to the game.

Defensive tackle D.J. Reader was placed on the IR on Thursday with an MCL injury, which is expected to sideline him until November at the earliest.

Cincinnati Bengals News

The loss of Reader is a significant blow to Cincinnati's defense, especially up front. The 28-year-old veteran had been an anchor on the defensive line this season, helping the Bengals give up the eighth-fewest rushing yards and fourth-fewest rushing touchdowns so far.

On the plus side, Reader's injury is not believed to be season-ending. He'll attempt to return in six weeks, which is roughly at the midway point of the regular season. If Reader comes back healthy and strong, he could provide a considerable boost to Cincinnati's defense in the second half.

For now, though, his absence leaves a 6-foot-3, 347-pound hole on the Bengal's defensive line. His loss comes ahead of a crucial primetime matchup against the undefeated Dolphins with Cincinnati looking to get back to .500 after an 0-2 start. The Bengals are favored by 3.5 points at home on FanDuel Sportsbook's NFL odds, but losing Reader will make it tougher to stop Miami's high-octane offense.

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