John Thornton keeps door open between the Bengals and Michael Johnson

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Bengals defensive end Michael Johnson, entering free agency in early March as an unrestricted free agent, still has a chance to return to Cincinnati, says John Thornton, who co-represents Johnson.

Little did we know that John Thornton, a former Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle, hasn't just dabbled in the world of being a player agent, he is one. With Jock Biz Sports. One of the players that he co-represents, with Chicago-based Rick Smith with Priority Sports is Bengals defensive end Michael Johnson, who enters free agency in early March as one of the top unrestricted free agents in the NFL.

Despite the otherwise fanatical opinion that Johnson won't return to the Bengals in 2014, Thornton isn't closing that door, offering that there's a possibility for Cincinnati and Johnson to reach an agreement.

"I would say so," Thornton said via Bengals.com. "I know a lot things have been said out there that there’s not a chance. But that’s not the case. That just shows people don’t know about the situation. They don’t know what happened last summer. They don’t know what is happening now. The good thing about Rick, Katie, Mike, myself is that we’re not public people that want everything out there. I think it’s still a possibility. I think everybody really wants it to happen, so we’ll see."

In all honesty, it would be a shock. Along with the increasing cap number for Carlos Dunlap and Geno Atkins, and existing cap numbers for Leon Hall, Andrew Whitworth and Andre Smith, there are extensions in consideration for wide receiver A.J. Green and linebacker Vontaze Burfict, who enters the final-year of a three-year contract.

And while Thornton is one of our all-time favorite players, in regards to fan interaction, we get that player agents are wise to keep that door open to help with overall negotiations. At the same time, I don't think Thornton would purposefully mislead people about the situation. However, the fact that no one involved in the negotiations are public, tends to force people to fill in the blanks too.

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