It’s a question Cincinnati Bengals fans have been asking for two years now—will Jessie Bates be re-signed?
The longer time has passed, the more the answer feels easy to predict.
Bates has been one of the best free safeties in all of football since being drafted by Cincinnati and pushing George Iloka out of his starting role in 2018. That hasn’t always translated to consistency over long stretches of play, but the talent and production are undeniable.
Cincinnati knew what they had in the former Wake Forest product after he was named Second-Team All-Pro following the 2020 season. Extension talks began in the summer of 2021, but soon stalled before the regular season began.
Bates had a roller coaster of a contract season because of it. Negotiations didn’t improve in early 2022, which prompted the team to use the franchise tag on the leader of their secondary, and both sides seemed to be even further apart as the offseason progressed.
Bates eventually had an adequate season after holding out of training camp.
The Bengals won’t place the tag on Bates for a second consecutive year, which means the 26-year-old will hit the free agency market for the first time in his career.
Will the Bengals re-sign Bates?
Let us know what you think in the poll below and in the comments section!
Will the Bengals re-sign Jessie Bates?
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