7 Cincinnati Bengals free agents we will sadly miss in 2022
1. Jessie Bates
Last, but most certainly not least, we have Jessie Bates. The Bengals spent a second-round pick on Bates in the 2018 NFL Draft and the Wake Forest product didn’t disappoint in his first three years.
This year hasn’t been nearly as kind to Bates but losing him in the offseason would still be brutal. Bates is the heart and soul of the defense and removing him would put this secondary in a crappy situation moving forward.
Spotrac has Bates projected to earn a five-year deal worth $72 million. The Bengals can afford to shell out that kind of money to one of their best defensive players and Bates has said he’d like to stay with the organization. He’s one of the best safeties in the league and the Bengals need to pay him like it.
If Bates left in free agency, fans would be incredibly upset, and for good reason. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen.
We don’t know the fate of these seven free agents yet but it’s highly unlikely that all seven of them stay in Cincinnati. If any of them do leave, it’ll be a punch in the gut to Bengals fans.