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Andrew Whitworth’s agent meeting with Bengals soon

Can the Bengals and Andrew Whitworth hammer out a deal before he’s scheduled to hit the open market in March?

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

The Bengals want to re-sign Andrew Whitworth sooner rather than later.

It looks like we could see some significant movement in the coming weeks. According to a report from’s Geoff Hobson, Whitworth’s agent will be speaking with the Bengals next week in hopes of making progress towards a new deal.

Long-time NFL agent Pat Dye Jr., the representative for Bengals left tackle Andrew Whitworth, has traded e-mails with Bengals vice president Troy Blackburn and the two have agreed to touch base regarding a deal for Whitworth next week when Dye gets back from watching five of his clients at the Pro Bowl.

Whitworth is one of them, and Dye said after Wednesday’s South practice that he can only reiterate what his client told the media as he went into free agency after the season.

“He’s played his whole career there and it would be cool to finish his career there. We’ll see,” Dye said. “There’s a lot of ground to cover between now and March the ninth when free agency begins.”

“We’ve got a lot of history with the organization. We get along well with the Brown family and Blackburn family. There’s a little bit of a kindred spirit since we’re both with football families.” …

Whitworth, who just finished his 11th NFL season, started every game in 2016, 15 of which came at left tackle. He also started Week 16 at left guard, while filling in for the injured Clint Boling.

Whitworth is still among the game’s best left tackles and best locker room leaders. He finished second among offensive tackle in PFF’s rankings. For his efforts, Whitworth was named to the Pro Bowl as an alternate, replacing Raiders offensive tackle Donald Penn due to injury.

The expectation has been Cincinnati will re-sign Whitworth before he’s able to test the open market, but if he hits the market, many teams will likely come after him. There are already rumors swirling regarding teams like the Vikings and Giants who would be interested.

Not many teams will be willing to throw big-money deals toward a lineman who is 35 and will turn 36 during the 2017 NFL season. But, Whitworth still offers a lot of value to the Bengals and remains one of the game’s best players at his position.

It remains to be seen how much other teams would value him in free agency, though, hopefully we won’t need to see that and the Bengals will re-sign him before March 9 rolls around.

Here’s how much Whitworth has made for the past few seasons:

You can figure Whitworth will want no less than the $8 million he made in 2016 for the 2017 season.