For one of the least dramatic players in the NFL, there has been a lot of drama surrounding A.J. Green this season.
The Bengals’ star wide receiver just announced that he will likely miss the rest of the season after injuring his ankle on the first day of training camp. After hearing this, the team decided they will franchise Green if they can’t reach a long term deal by free agency.
Green responded, saying that he will play under the franchise tag, but will skip OTAs and probably skip training camp as well.
A.J. Green said if he is franchise tagged he would definitely not be participating in any of the OTAs and maybe not all of training camp next year.— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) December 18, 2019
On TC: "I don't know. It's still a business."
On proving he's healthy in offseason: "I don't have to prove anything to nobody."
The last player to do this for the Bengals was Carlos Dunlap in 2018, who was in the middle of contract negotiations himself. Dunlap missed out on $300,000 worth of bonuses, but wound up with a three-year, $45 million extension.
While Green is also in an uncertain contract situation, his injury history probably plays more of a role in his decision. He just doesn’t want to get injured again like he did this year.
Honestly, who can blame him?
If it plays out for Green like it did for Dunlap, this won’t affect Green’s contract at all. In actuality, even if the Bengals slap him with a franchise tag, they could easily work out a long term deal and rescind the tag.