Cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick is close to making his injury-delayed NFL debut, possibly this Sunday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The Bengals took Kirkpatrick with the 17th overall pick, but an injury to his left knee wiped out all of his training camp. He returned to practice on a limited basis earlier this month and has been getting better each time out.
Kirkpatrick said on Wednesday that his knee has healed and he's eager to get on the field. Coach Marvin Lewis hasn't ruled out using him against the Steelers (2-3) at Paul Brown Stadium.
The Bengals (3-3) initially envisioned Kirkpatrick competing for a starting spot. They've had to adjust to injuries at the position. The Bengals have only two interceptions this season, tied for second-fewest in the league.