Bengals' Hawkins to start season on IR

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Andrew Hawkins will start the season on injured reserve because of ankle problems, but was given the designation to return tag.

Hawkins, who has been sidelined since the beginning of August, will be eligible to return to practice as early as Week 7 and could return to game action for Week 9.

The 26-year-old Toledo product started two of the 14 games he played last season and caught 51 passes for 533 yards with four touchdowns. He caught 23 passes as a rookie in 2011.

Cincinnati also re-signed offensive tackle Dennis Roland, who had played in every game for the Bengals since 2009 before being among the team's final cuts last week.

The Bengals also signed quarterback Greg McElroy to the practice squad. McElroy spent the past two seasons with the Jets, earning his first NFL start last year, but was released by the team on Monday in an injury settlement. He had been battling a knee injury.