The Bengals assigned their franchise tag to Bates to buy time for negotiations.
Sadly, the July 15 deadline ended with both sides not having a signed deal.
Therefore, Bates will play under the tag which is a one-year, fully guaranteed deal.
However, he hasn’t signed the tag and could initiate a holdout without getting fined.
There shouldn’t have been a concern about re-signing Bates because he was one of their most productive defensive players, especially during the playoffs.
He was an asset in the secondary that came up with big plays when the Bengals needed one.
That’s why Bengals beat report Kelsey Conway is making a strong case for Bates.
Trey Hendrickson is up there production wise too but Jessie Bates would be right behind them.
The Bengals aren’t a better team without Jessie on the field & even if Dax Hill turns out to be great, he’s still going to take time to develop & the window for the #Bengals is now. https://t.co/Uo9YWdWSfr
— Kelsey Conway (@KelseyLConway) July 18, 2022
Conway tweeted, “Trey Hendrickson is up there production-wise too but Jessie Bates would be right behind them. The Bengals aren’t a better team without Jessie on the field & even if Dax Hill turns out to be great, he’s still going to take time to develop & the window for the #Bengals is now.”
Even James Palmer of “Good Morning Football” said that Bates is the team’s second-most important player behind Joe Burrow.
The Issue Between Bates And The Bengals
Money is the root cause of the divide between the two sides.
Bates’ camp argues that he deserves to be paid near the ceiling of the safety market at $18 million annually.
The Bengals are looking for an annual average value near the tag of around $12 million a year.
They must address the huge discrepancy to make both sides satisfied.
But given his performance last season, Cincinnati could give him a short deal that averages near the top value.
That way, it would be easier to get rid of his contract if it turned out that his performance is a one-season wonder.