Bengals star Tee Higgins Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins (5) looks towards Cleveland Browns fans in the closing moments of the fourth quarter of an NFL football game between the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns, Sunday, Sept. 10, 2023, at Cleveland Browns Stadium in Cincinnati.

The Cincinnati Bengals came into the season as a potential Super Bowl contender with a number of explosive and talented weapons on offense. However, they did not show up in their season opener, and perhaps the worst player on their offense Sunday was star wide receiver Tee Higgins.

Higgins is coming off of back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons and has been one of the best No. 2 receivers in all of football. But his performance on Sunday was not indicative of that whatsoever…

The entire Bengals offense struggled mightily, only putting together 142 yards of total offense. Higgins did not take part in any of those yards for the Bengals, as he was held to zero receptions despite getting eight targets from Joe Burrow.

Considering his role on what was supposed to be an elite Bengals offense, many fans were extremely disappointed by his play in this game.

There is one outside factor for Higgins that could have directly led to his poor play, his unsteady contract situation with the Bengals.

The team notably decided to sign star quarterback Joe Burrow to the largest contract extension in NFL history this week. And reports have emerged that this could mean that Higgins may not get the deal he wants with the team.

According to Kelsey Conway of The Cincinnati Enquirer, the Bengals and Higgins are “not close” on a potential contract extension.

Obviously it is pure speculation to say that this is the sole reason why Higgins played poorly. But it is at least worth monitoring his play for the rest of the season to see if he picks up his play without a long-term contract.

About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.