Zac Taylor on A.J. Green: 'Obviously, he's down'

A.J. Green looked to be sailing toward a big payday and getting back to the Pro Bowl when another injury struck.

The star receiver's availability for the season opener is in doubt as he gets a second opinion on a sprained ankle suffered over the weekend in Dayton, Ohio.

Last year, Green missed seven games due to injury. His latest issue striking before a bounce-back campaign could get underway caused frustration for the veteran, but first-year coach Zac Taylor tried to spin positive.

"I'd be disappointed, too," Taylor said Monday, via the Cincinnati Enquirer. "He's coming back from an injury, then this happens. Obviously, he's down. We say, 'you're A.J. Green. You'll bounce back from this. You'll have the season you're expecting to have.' I'm proud of the way he's handled the adversity. I look forward to having him back -- whenever that time comes."

Taylor said he hopes to have clarification on the potential timeline for Green's injury Tuesday. The initial timeframe was reported as six-eight weeks, which is why the start of his 2019 campaign is in doubt.

Green isn't the only Bengals receiver dealing with issues. Former first-round pick John Ross has been out with a hamstring injury.

Instead of being frustrated, Taylor took a positive route, viewing the injuries as an opportunity for other receivers to step up.

"Now it's time for guys to step up," Taylor said. "John Ross is down. A.J.'s down. I've seen a great effort. Great attention to detail."

Cody Core, Alex Erickson, Josh Malone, Auden Tate and others should get more reps alongside Tyler Boyd with Green and Ross out. None will come close to influencing the offense like Green does if he ends up missing any meaningful time.

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