Tyler Eifert out again this week

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It looked like Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert was closing in on a return to action after offseason ankle surgery a couple of weeks ago, but a back injury has extended his absence from the lineup.

That absence will continue when the Bengals travel to New England this weekend. Eifert has been ruled out of the game after another week went by without his presence on the practice field.

It’s a disappointing and frustrating trend for the Bengals, who have clearly missed Eifert’s presence as a red zone target this season. Eifert scored 13 receiving touchdowns last season, but Cincinnati has only had five among all receivers this season and that total includes a couple of Brandon LaFell scores when the Bengals were down 28-0 in the fourth quarter last weekend.

Everyone else on the Bengals was a full participant in Friday’s practice, including running back Jeremy Hill. Hill hurt his chest last Sunday, but has been able to practice all week.