Bates has stated that he will not play under the franchise tag. During the 2021 regular season he wasn't in the top 30 ranking of Safeties. He's had one good year; one above average year; and, two poor years. His production doesn't match the apparent desire to reset the Safety market.
What should the FO consider? There are 5 weeks and 1 day until an extension is no longer possible. Why not let Bates' agent seek a trade partner? I think it is a win-win situation. Imo there are no teams that want to pay Bates the $$ his agent wants. Thus, Bates might settle for the Bengals offer. Otherwise, if a team really thinks Bates is worth top $$ then the trade capital to the Bengals should be highly reasonable.