Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Margus Hunt got some surprising, and welcome, news Tuesday when trainers told him he had been cleared to return to practice after opening camp on the Physically Unable to Perform list.
“I expected this process to take longer, to be honest,” Hunt said after practice Tuesday. “But we’ve been working hard, and I’ve been doing everything that’s required with the rehab. It’s definitely taking a bigger leap forward than I originally thought.”
Hunt hurt his lower back while lifting in the offseason, which was his latest setback after a string of injuries during the 2014 season.
Hunt didn’t wear shoulder pads and only took part in some light position drills, and he said that likely will be the case Thursday when the team resumes practice after today’s off day.
“When it comes to pads, not yet,” he said. “ It’s a day-to-day process. It will still take a while before I start doing full contact. But we’re moving day to day to see how it holds up, and we’ll go from there. There’s no point in trying to get back too soon and hurt it again and be set back.”
Hunt battled rib, knee and ankle injuries to appear in 12 games last year with one sack and six tackles. He played 10 games as a rookie, logging a half sack and four tackles.