Bengals first-round pick Billy Price says he's 'fully cleared' after NFL combine injury

Most summer injury stories coming out of the NFL are negative, but on Monday, a positive injury update emerged for a team that needs all the good news it can get. On Monday, Bengals first-round pick Billy Price revealed that he's fully cleared for football activities again, which means he should be a full-go for training camp next month and the coming season.

That's great news for both the Bengals and Price, who suffered a torn pectoral muscle while he was bench pressing at the NFL combine. At the time, it was viewed as a potentially devastating injury considering Price was regarded as one of the top center prospects in the draft. The injury, however, didn't prohibit the Bengals from gobbling up Price with the 21st-overall pick in the draft.

In Cincinnati, Price is expected to start from Day One to bolster an offensive line that allowed the 13th-most sacks last season (40) and ranked 20th in pass protection by Football Outsiders' metrics. In addition to Price, the Bengals will also be adding left tackle Cordy Glenn to the mix after acquiring him in an offseason trade with the Bills. 

The Bengals might not be the favorites in the AFC North or the favorites in the wild-card race, but they might not be as bad as many think they'll be. A year ago, they went 7-9 and placed 24th in overall DVOA. That's definitely not good, but with a few improvements, the Bengals could hover around .500, which could be enough to get them into the wild-card mix. I'm not saying the Bengals are making the playoffs in 2018 -- I don't think they will -- I'm just saying that they might not be terrible if their offensive line takes a step forward. 

And that's the most optimistic I can be about the Bengals this year.

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CBS Sports Writer

Sean Wagner-McGough joined CBS Sports in 2015 after graduating from UC Berkeley. A native of Seattle, Sean now resides in the Bay Area. He spends his spare time defending Jay Cutler on Twitter. Full Bio

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