Fresh off of their first division win, the Cincinnati Bengals are hoping to get a big part of their offense back for Sunday’s road game against the Titans. Ja’Marr Chase, the Bengals’ Pro Bowl wideout who has missed the past three games with a hip injury, is looking to return to the field Sunday for the first time since sustaining the injury in Week 7. 

On Monday, Chase alluded to the possibility that he will return to practice ahead of Sunday’s game. Bengals coach Zac Taylor then confirmed that Chase would resume practice this week but didn’t offer any promises as to whether or not Chase will be back in time to face the Titans. 

“It is truly a day to day situation,” Taylor said, via The Athletic

The Bengals are 2-1 this season without Chase, who had not missed an NFL game prior to sustaining his hip injury. His absence was clearly felt during the Bengals’ first game without him, a 32-13 loss in Cleveland on Halloween night. Cincinnati’s offense was significantly better six days later in a blowout win over the Panthers that saw running back Joe Mixon score five touchdowns while tallying more than 200 all-purpose yards.

Cincinnati had perhaps its finest performance of the season during Sunday’s 37-30 win over the Steelers. Despite not having Chase and losing running back Joe Mixon during the game (Mixon is currently in the NFL’s concussion protocol), the Bengals racked up 408 total yards while scoring touchdowns on all three of their trips inside the Steelers’ 20-yard-line. Joe Burrow threw for 355 yards and four touchdowns, while Tee Higgins caught a season-high nine passes for 148 yards. Samaje Perine also stepped up while becoming the first Bengals running back to catch three touchdown passes in the same game. 

While they’ve put together a winning record without him, the Bengals are a vastly better outfit with Chase on the field. In seven games this season, the former first-round pick caught 47 passes for 605 yards and six touchdowns. In the two games prior to getting injured, Chase caught a combined 15 passes for 262 yards and four touchdowns in Bengals wins over the Saints and Falcons

A possible Week 12 return for Chase would obviously be welcomed news for the Bengals, who at 6-4 are currently second behind Baltimore in the AFC North division standings. Cincinnati is hoping to make it back to the playoffs this season after coming up just short in its surprising Super Bowl run this past winter. 

“Everything has been positive up to this point, which we hoped it would be,” Taylor said of Chase’s recovery, via ESPN

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