“I don’t know,” Eifert said, when asked if he would be ready for training camp. “I’ll have to see how I’m feeling and go from there.”
Eifert missed the entire 2016 offseason, and the first six games, after recovering from an ankle injury in the Pro Bowl. Eifert had a setback early in the season after injuring his back but was able to play through it for eight games. He went on IR for the final two games of the season to have surgery on his back.
Eifert said he just began running again a few weeks ago, and feels close to 100 percent. However, he still has strength issues to work through.
“I’m still doing my rehab and my core stuff, just started doing some change-of-direction stuff so I’m just taking it one step at a time,” he said.
He added: “I’ve still lost a lot of strength with the nerve issues and all of that stuff. Just working through some of that. Once I get my strength back I’ll be fine.”
Eifert said there will also be certain limitations for the rest of his career due to the nature of his injury, such as doing squats when weight lifting.
“I’ve worked through a back (issue) before and you just find ways to get the same benefits from different lifts or different ways to work out. You just have to work around it, which is fine. I’ve done that before,” he said.
Eifert, 26, has missed 27 games in his career due to injury. He has played in 37 games for the Bengals with 123 receptions for 1,491 yards and 20 touchdowns. Eifert is entering the final year of his rookie contract.