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Bengals give Trey Hopkins a 3-year extension

Cincinnati’s starting center will remain with the team through the 2022 season.

NFL: NOV 10 Ravens at Bengals Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

For the first time since Kyle Cook, the Bengals have a center they can rely on.

The Bengals today signed C Trey Hopkins to a three-year contract extension that runs through the 2022 season. It will pay Hopkins a total of $20.4M and $4.5M will be guaranteed, per Ian Rapoport.

Originally an undrafted free agent out of the University of Texas, Hopkins was a frequent member of the Bengals’ practice squad up until 2016 when he got his first taste of playing time. He earned the starting right guard spot in the 2017 season and started nine games at center in 2018.

This season, in a new system with new coaches, Hopkins beat out 2018 first-round pick Billy Price for the center job for real and has started 15 quality games for Cincinnati there. This extension solidifies Hopkins’ status as the team’s center moving forward. His new average salary of $6.8M puts him 17th in that category among veteran centers, per Spotrac, so kudos to the Bengals for getting a deal signed before free agency began this offseason.

The Bengals have a center of the future and a proven building block for the offensive line, two things that you’d never think they’d find.