Sources: A.J. Green proclaims himself ready to return

CINCINNATI -- Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green made his status pretty clear this week.

"I'm definitely back," he told reporters at his locker Wednesday morning.

Green injured his toe late in a game against the Buccaneers on Oct. 28 and has declined all interviews since then, explaining that he would talk when he was playing.

All signs point to that happening against the Broncos this week. Green avoided surgery on his injured toe but said he needed time to get healthy.

"I feel good," he said. "Nobody is 100 percent at this stage of the season, but I feel good. I feel ready. I'm going to practice today and go through my regular routine."

Although it seemed promising Green could play last week, he was downgraded from questionable to doubtful on Saturday after missing the entire week of practice.

"With this injury it just took time to heal," he said. "(And) me getting mentally ready to where I could go out there and play at a high level and not just be out there limping around."

Green missed the final six games of the 2016 season after tearing his right hamstring in Week 11. Although Green felt like he was healthy enough to come back toward the end of the season, Bengals' ownership shut him down with the team out of the playoffs. Green was unhappy with the decision and made it clear that wouldn't be the case this year, whether the team remained in playoff contention or not. He'll be on the field either way, he said.

"Not happening. Not happening," he repeated several times. "I'm here to win. I'm here to play football, no matter what the situation."