Zac Taylor says A.J. Green is finally healthy after missing 2019 season: 'Everything has been positive'
The Bengals are hoping Green can return to form in 2020
The Cincinnati Bengals have made some important signings in free agency so far this offseason, but one interesting move they made was placing the franchise tag on wide receiver A.J. Green. The seven-time Pro Bowler turns 32 in July and missed the entire 2019 season due to an ankle injury, but head coach Zac Taylor still believes he can be one of the best wideouts in the league. During a virtual press conference on Wednesday, Taylor gave an update to reporters on Green's status, and said that everything has been going well and he should be fully healthy heading into the 2020 season.
"Everything's been positive with A.J.," Taylor said. "He's fully healthy and is working hard. He's been in Atlanta. It's all been positive in that regard."
Green has played in just nine games over the last two seasons and his situation in 2019 was one that raised some eyebrows. He suffered an ankle injury in training camp back in July, and while an initial X-ray showed no signs of fracture, he did suffer torn ligaments that required a clean-up procedure. The original thought was that he would miss the entire preseason, but soon that timeline drifted into the regular season — and then finally the entire year.
Last month, the Bengals made the decision to place the franchise tag on Green — which will pay him almost $18 million in 2020. Many assume the Bengals will select former LSU quarterback Joe Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick in a couple of weeks, and it would benefit him to have a veteran wideout like Green to help him develop. Peter King of NBC's Football Morning in America even reported that Burrow met with a Bengals delegation in March, and he reportedly made it clear that he wants the team to find a way to keep Green on the roster.
Now fully healthy, the Bengals are hoping Green can return to Pro-Bowl form in 2020, and that Cincinnati will be able to quickly move on from its abysmal 2-14 campaign last season.