Until the Cincinnati Bengals agree to an extension with star receiver Tee Higgins, we'll continue to see trade rumors everywhere. That's what Ari Meirov of The 33rd Team stated recently.
Sure, Bengals fans are tired of hearing about this but Meirov says that until a decision is made, the trade rumors will continue. It is the offseason after all. What else do people have to talk about?
Don't count on the Tee Higgins rumors slowing down
""Tee Higgins is a name we're going to hear a lot about," Meirov said. "And it's just simply because they have so many guys to pay. ... So he's eligible for an extension now entering the final year of his contract, and Joe Burrow needs a new contract. Ja'Marr Chase will be up for a new contract next year, which opens the door to the question of what happens to Tee Higgins? Who is probably the No. 1 receiver on most teams, and he has every right to ask for a contract like A.J. Brown, who got $25 million per year last year when he was traded from Tennessee to Philadelphia.""- Ari Meirov
""It all really depends on how Cincinnati looks at this outlook of their roster when they know Burrow needs a new deal. They know Ja'Marr Chase will need a new deal next year. There's no chance they're going to break those two up. So what happens to a guy like Tee Higgins? Do you trade him for a first-round pick and more and try to find somebody else? Or do you pay him, eventually pay Ja'Marr Chase, and then have two receivers making significant money on your roster?""- Ari Meirov
The quoted blurbs above are courtesy of Russ Heltman of Sports Illustrated.
Higgins had previously stated that he wants to be in Cincinnati long-term and shut down any of the rumors going on about him wanting a lot of money. That, to me, suggests that he does indeed want to stay with the Bengals but the team doesn't have to extend him this offseason to keep him around in 2023.
Higgins won't be a free agent until next spring so the team could theoretically do nothing and still have him on the team. The benefit to trading him now is that they'd get a lot more draft picks in the deal but Higgins is a big piece of the offense so the Bengals will surely do what it takes to keep him around.
Yes, it'd be cheaper to trade him and find a replacement in the draft but Higgins is so important to this team. If there's a way to keep him around, the Bengals will try their best to do it.
The offseason has only just begun so if you think the Higgins trade rumors are insufferable now, just wait until things vamp up in the next few weeks and months. It's going to be a long offseason, folks.