Joe Burrow reacts to Bengals using franchise tag on Tee Higgins

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow (9) looks toward Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow (9) looks toward Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee / Sam Greene/The Enquirer / USA TODAY

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow is happy that wide receiver Tee Higgins will be back in Cincinnati next season (barring an offseason trade), after the team designated Higgins as a franchise player, and he hopes that the two sides eventually agree on a long-term extension.

"Having him back this year, obviously, I hope we're going to have him longer, but it's exciting for me to have him this year and then it's a nice little payday for him," Burrow said of Higgins. "Then hopefully he gets another one here soon."

These recent comments from Burrow echo what he said about Higgins earlier this year when he made his desire for Higgins to remain in Cincinnati clear.

"It's no secret, our relationship,"Burrow said of Higgins back in January. "I expect Tee to be back. I think that's the sentiment in the locker room. We all want Tee back. . . . We know what kind of player he is. We know what kind of person he is. He's what being a Bengal is all about."

Burrow's return timetable revealed

In order to capitalize on Higgins' ability as a receiver, Burrow needs to be out on the field throwing him the ball, and the Bengals quarterback recently revealed some good news in that regard.

After suffering a season-ending wrist injury last season and subsequently having surgery, Burrow said that he is hoping to be fully cleared and back out on the field in the next couple of months.

"I think middle of May is when I am expecting to kind of be cleared for full contact and everything," Burrow said. "Over the next month [to] month and a half, we'll kind of decide all those things.

". . . I can lift basically normally now, which I'm excited about," Burrow added. "So the next two months, I'll basically be just doing what I've done for the last couple of years. Just the 12 weeks of extra work in the rearview."

Even after tagging Higgins, the possibility remains that the Bengals could try to trade the productive receiver this offseason. However, doing so clearly wouldn't be something Burrow would be very happy about.