NFL Rumors

Bengals Using Franchise Tag On WR Tee Higgins

Bengals Using Franchise Tag On WR Tee Higgins

The Bengals have a number of pending free agents to deal with heading into the new league year, but the team has made the decision to cover their bases with wide receiver Tee Higgins by informing him that they will apply the franchise tag to him in 2024, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. Higgins is the first tagged player of the offseason.

If Higgins had been selected one pick earlier in 2020, Cincinnati may have been enjoying the luxury of a fifth-year option right now. Instead, as the first pick of the second round, Higgins’ four-year rookie contract has now come to an end. One of the more consistent producers of the past four years, Higgins was sure to draw a nice deal in free agency.

As a rookie, Higgins took over in a receiving room that included Tyler Boyd and an aging A.J. Green. He would lead the team in both receiving yards (908) and touchdowns (6). His sophomore season, Higgins watched a rookie Ja’Marr Chase do the same thing he had done his rookie year. Despite improving his yards (1,091) and matching his touchdown total (6) in two fewer games, Higgins was outpaced by Chase’s stellar rookie totals. In 2022, the two established themselves one of the premier receiving duos in the league as Higgins once again surpassed the 1,000-yard mark and caught seven touchdowns.

In this season’s contract year, Higgins failed to deliver a fourth-straight strong season to really bolster his free agency resume. Still, despite missing five games, Higgins was second on the team with 5 touchdown receptions and was 11 yards short of finishing second in receiving yards, as well. Had he played the extra five games, he would’ve been on pace to see similar numbers to his rookie year.

 

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