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Bengals not sure Vontaze Burfict will return this year

Vontaze Burfict

Vontaze Burfict

AP

When linebacker Vontaze Burfict had knee surgery in late October, the word was that he’d miss a few weeks before returning to the Bengals lineup.

That timeline proved to be a bit too optimistic. Burfict missed his sixth straight game when the Bengals lost to the Steelers last Sunday and there’s no sign that his return is imminent. Coach Marvin Lewis said Monday that he doesn’t know for sure that Burfict will be able to return at all after having his knee scoped.

“We’ll see him when everybody says he’s ready to play or good enough to play we’ll have an idea,” Lewis said, via the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Burfict also missed two games early in the season because of a concussion, which leaves him with just five games under his belt in a frustrating 2014 season. The Bengals defense has had its ups and downs without him, with the loss to the Steelers representing a low that can’t be repeated if the Bengals are going to wind up in the playoffs.