Tee Higgins Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins (85) warms up before the first quarter of the NFL Week 18 game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Baltimore Ravens at Paycor Stadium in downtown Cincinnati on Sunday, Jan. 8, 2023. Baltimore Ravens At Cincinnati Bengals Nfl Week 18

Wide receiver Tee Higgins, a huge part of the Cincinnati Bengals’ high-powered air attack, may be entering his last season with the team.

The Cincinnati Enquirer‘s Kelsey Conway reported Friday that Higgins and the Bengals “are not close and never got close on a contract extension,” and that he “is not believed to be in the Bengals’ future plans.”

Higgins, 24, is in the final year of his rookie contract. He rejected a contract offer from the Bengals this offseason.

While the team could use the franchise tag on Higgins for next season, Conway reported that’s unlikely (unless it’s done for tag-and-trade purposes). The Bengals just dished out an NFL-record $275 million extension to quarterback Joe Burrow. Keeping Higgins around for another season when he’s not in their long-term plans seems counterproductive.

After Higgins reacted to news of Burrow’s new contract Friday, reporters asked him whether his own contract negotiations were still active.

“I hope,” he said via Cincinnati’s WLWT TV. “But I have no clue, like I said my job is just come in every day and do my work.”

But Higgins conceded the Bengals’ decision on a possible extension is beyond his control.

“Negotiation happens when it happens,” Higgins said. “I want to show I can be a number 1, feel like I have before, feel like there’s always room for improvement.”

Higgins has posted back-to-back 1,000-yard receiving seasons, with 74 catches and seven touchdowns last season.


About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.