James Wright was cleared for practice Monday for the first time in nearly two years and became inspired.
Wright, a seventh-round pick out of LSU in 2014, was injured in his break-out game on Nov. 30, 2014, a three-catch, 59-yard effort in Tampa highlighted by a 30-yard catch down the sideline on third-and-long late in a 14-13 win that helped keep the ball from the Buccaneers.
He looked ready to fit into the Bengals’ riddled receiving corps in the No. 3 role as a guy that could contribute on special teams as well as separate well enough to be productive in the passing game. But a torn PCL ended his season and when he didn’t bounce back the next spring, microfracture knee surgery threatened to cut short his career.
With Mohamed Sanu and Marvin Jones now gone from Cincy, the Bengals could certainly use Wright. Tyler Boyd and Brandon LaFell are also competing for time with A.J. Green. Wright is looking to climb up the depth chart but the team will be looking to see if Wright still has explosion and if he can separate like he once did.