How much will the Cincinnati Bengals spend in free agency this year? We don’t have the answer to that. Whoever they do sign, however, is unlikely to get more 2020 cash from them than A.J. Green.
During his podium session today at the NFL Scouting Combine, Zac Taylor was asked about Green and his status as an impending unrestricted free agent. His response expressed confidence in Green returning to Cincinnati next season.
Head Coach Zac Taylor on A.J. Green: “We know he will be a Bengal come September... We want him to be a part of Cincinanti.”— Marisa Contipelli (@BengalsMarisa) February 25, 2020
This has been assumed for some time now. It’s a practical guarantee that the Bengals will end up using the franchise tag on Green before free agency officially begins on March 18th. Thanks to the on-going CBA negotiations, the Bengals actually have a couple extra days to place the tag on Green, with March 12th being the new deadline.
Green has stated that he would not prefer to play under the tag, but will do so nevertheless. Both sides have expressed clear interest in staying together long-term, and this would be a vehicle to help make that happen.
After the tag is placed on Green, the Bengals will have until July 15th to agree on an extension with him. If not, Green will have to play the 2020 season under the franchise tag and talks on a new contract will be put to the side until next year.
No matter what happens at that deadline, Green will be under contract for this season with the Bengals. Taylor didn’t even need to confirm this today for this to be the known, but it does clear up any potential confusion that may’ve still existed. It also doesn’t hurt that Joe Burrow expressed support in Green’s inevitable return for his rookie season in the Queen City.
Joe Burrow on the potential of playing with A.J. Green: “With any rookie quarterback the more help you can get the better... if I’m lucky enough to be drafted first overall I’d like to have him on the roster.” #Bengals— Marisa Contipelli (@BengalsMarisa) February 25, 2020
A partnership between Burrow and Green is already in the works for this season. The real question is if it’ll last longer then that.