The Bengals and Andrew Whitworth seem to have differing opinions as to whether he’ll be back in Cincinnati next season.
According to FOX Sports’ Jay Glazer, the Bengals have been adamant that Whitworth will re-sign with the team, but Whitworth himself hasn’t been quite as bullish.
Whitworth also got lot of play but cincy smartly tried to convince teams at combine it was in stone he was back. Whit tried to insist not so— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) March 8, 2017
The disconnect here is probably just the Bengals trying to keep teams away from Whitworth, whereas he wants to see the interest level around the league. Whitworth has made it clear he wants to re-sign with the Bengals, but he also wants to test the market and get a fair deal this offseason.
It sounds like the Bengals are trying to keep other teams from offering him a contract and potentially driving up his asking price. Whitworth has more than earned a nice payday in what will likely be the final NFL contract, so if the Bengals are hoping to be cheap with it, the team shouldn’t be. Whitworth has earned every penny of his next deal and to be paid a contract equal to his worth.
Maybe this is merely a little miscommunication between both sides. We all want to see Whitworth finish his career in Bengals stripes, but he’s also more than deserving of a chance to sign a nice deal with another team and/or go somewhere that will put him in great position to contend for a Super Bowl.
The Bengals certainly have potential to re-sign him, but there’s no question that several NFL teams have stronger Super Bowl aspirations.
Either way, the Bengals better make sure to give Whitworth a fair-market offer. He’s at the very least earned that much from the team.