Injured William Jackson could play for Bengals in 2016


The season might not be over yet for William Jackson.

Bengals coach Marvin Lewis confirmed Thursday that the rookie cornerback will undergo surgery for the torn pectoral muscle he suffered earlier this week. The team, though, believes Jackson could still play in 2016.

NFL Media's Mike Garafolo reported this week that Jackson's recovery could take three to four months. If the Bengals like his chances of returning, the cover man out of Houston is a candidate to be placed on injured reserve/designated to return.

Jackson is the third defensive back picked by the Bengals in the first round over the past five years. That alone leaves the team with unusual depth at a position where Adam Jones, Dre Kirkpatrick and Darqueze Dennard were already notched above Jackson in the pecking order.

The Bengals didn't need the rookie to start right away, but getting him back for Cincy's final rash of games -- and maybe the playoffs -- would serve as a boost for this defense.