Update: Marvin Jones' deal with the Lions is reportedly worth $40 million over five years. $20 million are guaranteed with an $8 million signing bonus.
Marvin Jones' deal with the #Lions is for 5 years at $40M, source said. $20M in guarantees, $17M fully guaranteed. Thru 3 years, it's $27M— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 9, 2016
Marvin Jones' Bengals career appears to be over.
The receiver is leaving the Queen City to head to the Motor City and play for the Detroit Lions, according to ESPN's Dianna Marie Russini.
Marvin Jones signing in Detroit per sources— Dianna Marie Russini (@diannaESPN) March 9, 2016
That stings, especially since free agency is just now getting set to open. Players can't officially sign deals until 4 p.m. EST Wednesday, but it looks like the Lions have made Jones an offer he cannot refuse.
The Bengals' 12-4 record in 2015 came in large part because of the offensive resurgence the team had after a subpar 2014 campaign. A big reason why the offense surged in 2013, fell off in 2014 and re-surged in 2015 was because of Marvin Jones' health.
After catching a career-high 10 touchdowns in 2013 as part of the Bengals' eighth-ranked passing offense, Jones missed all of 2014 with a foot injury as the Bengals finished with the NFL's 21st-ranked pass attack.
This past season, Jones returned with a vengeance while catching a career-high 65 passes (on 103 targets) for 816 yards to go with four scores. The Bengals were ranked in the top 10 and even top five at times this past season in passing offense, but finished 15th after Andy Dalton missed the final month of the season.
While Jones was typically the third option in this offense behind Eifert and A.J. Green, he was still a crucial piece to the passing game and will be hard to replace going forward.
It looks like Jones ended up getting a better deal than the four-year, $22-million deal Spotrac projected him to get.
A big reason why Jones will be off the market so quickly is he ended up being the best receiver to hit free agency. The Bears' Alshon Jeffery would be the No. 1 guy, but he was hit with the franchise tag. That means Jones is hitting a market with less-heralded names like Cleveland Browns receiver Travis Benjamin, Miami Dolphins receiver Rishard Matthews and New York Giants receiver Rueben Randle.
Farewell Jones and good luck continuing your career in Detroit.