Jessie Bates

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/5/22

Today’s minor moves around the NFL:

Baltimore Ravens

  • Released from IR via injury settlement: WR Shemar Bridgers

Carolina Panthers

Cincinnati Bengals

  • Waived: CB Allan George
  • Reverted to active roster: S Jessie Bates

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

New York Giants

  • Waived: RB Sandro Platzgummer

New York Jets

Washington Commanders

Nixon generated significant draft buzz after his college career at Iowa. His final season with the Hawkeyes in 2020 included 5.5 sacks and 13.5 tackles for loss, though he fell to the fifth round that year. He played sparingly as a rookie, and has met injury troubles early in his pro career. Despite the move, Carolina has a number of options to call on in a rotational role behind Derrick Brown and Matt Ioannidis

The roster cutting by the Bengals was necessary with today being the time at which Bates’ time on the Commissioner’s Exempt List expired. The franchise-tagged safety was the final holdout of the 2022 offseason, inking his tender long past the deadline for a long-term deal to be finalized. Fully back to team practices and activities, Bates’ time on the list allowed him to ramp up at his own rate following a lengthy absence throughout the spring and summer.

Lancaster was one of several additions the Raiders made on the d-line during free agency. The former UDFA spent the first four years of his career in Green Bay, registering 10 starts in 2019. Other signings such as Bilal Nichols and Andrew Billings will see plenty of playing time along the defensive interior in his absence.

Bengals’ Roster Down To Final 53

Cincinnati made the necessary moves today to trim its roster down to 53 players. While some may find themselves back in the striped helmet Wednesday, many will have to clear waivers before being announced to the 16-man practice squad. Here are the moves made today to get down to the 53-man roster:

Released:

Waived:

Waived/injured:

Placed on reserve/PUP list:

The defending AFC champions are looking to run it back with much of the same roster as last year. Thirty-eight of this year’s 53-man roster were on last year’s Super Bowl roster, with the differences coming on offensive line and at the bottom of the depth chart.

Additionally, it appears all six 2022 draft picks made the roster for the Bengals, as well as one undrafted rookie signing. With so many starters returning from the Super Bowl team, all the rookies will be expected to contribute in backup roles. First- and second-round defensive backs Daxton Hill and Cam Taylor-Britt figure to factor heavily into the defensive rotation, though. Also in the secondary, cornerback Allan George is the lone UDFA from this year’s crop to make Cincinnati’s final roster.

To call it the final roster is a bit misleading as the Bengals will likely follow their own trends from last season, setting the roster up for multiple post-deadline moves. The roster currently includes 11 defensive backs, not including starting safety Jessie Bates, working currently on a roster exemption. Taylor-Britt could likely find his way to the four-week injured reserve list after undergoing core surgery recently. Defensive end Khalid Kareem will join Taylor-Britt on short-term IR, according to head coach Zac Taylor, with a hamstring injury.

Many expect Cincinnati to mirror a roster move from last year with wide receiver Thomas. Thomas is a vested veteran who will avoid the waiver wire and is expected to re-sign with the team after a corresponding roster move, exactly what he did last year.

Finally, two position battles have been effectively decided with the waiving of long snapper Adomitis and punter Chrisman. Both intended to challenge incumbents Clark Harris and Kevin Huber from their long-time starting jobs. After avoiding being unseated, Huber is now on track to set a franchise record for games played in a Bengals uniform. Harris is close behind, trailing Huber by just six games.

Bengals’ Jessie Bates Signs Franchise Tender

Franchise-tagged Bengals safety Jessie Bates is back with the team. The fifth-year defender is at Cincinnati’s facility Tuesday and intends to sign his franchise tender, Kelsey Conway of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports (on Twitter). The Bengals subsequently announced Bates signed his tag.

Bates represented the NFL’s last 2022 no-show, but it has long been expected the former second-round pick would not miss any games. Bates and Bengals coaches kept in touch during his stretch away from the team, Albert Breer of SI.com tweets, noting the team expected him back in time to ramp up for the regular season.

While Bates and the Bengals cannot resume negotiations until 2023, the Wake Forest product continuing to stay away into the regular season would have cost him. Despite Bates voicing frustration about the tag, the $12.9MM salary represents a massive raise for the four-year starter.

The Bengals and Bates have negotiated for two offseasons but have failed to come to terms. The team’s first-round selection of Daxton Hill could be viewed as a move that separates the two sides come 2023, though fellow veteran Bengals safety Vonn Bell is also in a contract year. The Bengals are open to continuing their Bates negotiations in the 2023 offseason. However, it is far from certain if the parties will forge a long-term partnership.

Cincinnati could still trade Bates, but the defending AFC champions are not expected to do so. Bates, 25, has started all 63 Bengals games he has played. He stands to be an integral part of their veteran-laden defense in 2022. Bates missed Bengals training camp and nearly a month worth of practices. He is, however, hardly the first franchise-tagged player to have stayed away from his team during preseason workouts.

“Zero progress” is believed to have occurred during this offseason’s round of talks, which produced an offer Bates’ camp deemed unsatisfactory. The Bengals are believed to have offered a deal that included just $16MM fully guaranteed. That figure ranks outside the top 12 at the position. The safety market has also changed since the Bengals and Bates began talks this offseason. Minkah Fitzpatrick and Derwin James have signed deals north of $18MM per year, with the Chargers defender moving the market to $19.1MM on average. It is highly unlikely the Bengals will go there for Bates, who can be kept on a 2023 tag worth $15.5MM.

For now, it appears the sides will continue a year-to-year partnership. Bates is coming off a year in which he delivered a modestly productive regular season before being one of the team’s top performers during the playoffs. Bates, who graded as Pro Football Focus’ top safety in 2020, intercepted two passes and broke up six more in Cincinnati’s four postseason games this year. Although the Bengals’ decision to tag Bates spoiled a chance to cash in on a long-term deal as a 2022 free agent, another strong season would put him in position to be one of the top defenders available on the 2023 market.

Latest On Jessie Bates, Bengals Extensions

The Bengals didn’t sign Jessie Bates prior to the extension deadline, and despite having little leverage to avoid playing on the franchise tag in 2022, the safety is still away from the team as training camp starts. Speaking to reporters, Director of Player Personnel Duke Tobin acknowledged that the two sides “just didn’t come together” on a new deal and there are “no hard feelings” (via ESPN’s Ben Baby on Twitter).

[RELATED: Jessie Bates Absent From Training Camps]

Predictably, Tobin revealed that the front office would be willing to resume negotiations with Bates following the upcoming season. Bates has not yet signed his tender — which means that he cannot be fined for skipping training camp — but he will either need to sign it at some point or sit out the entire 2022 campaign, which seems highly unlikely. The most likely route sees Bates return to the field for the 2022 season and then hit unrestricted free agent next offseason. For what it’s worth, a trade isn’t expected.

Meanwhile, the Bengals front office will soon have to shift focus to extending their franchise quarterback. Speaking to reporters, team president Mike Brown made it clear that the Bengals want to keep Joe Burrow long-term.

“I can tell you that we couldn’t be happier with Joe Burrow,” Brown said (via Baby). “He’s everything you would wish for, especially for a quarterback in Cincinnati. Our whole focus is going to be on keeping him here.”

Burrow is entering the third year of his rookie contract, meaning there’s still plenty of time to negotiate a new pact. As Baby notes, the Bengals will also have to figure out how to proceed with an extension for wide receiver Tee Higgins, although Brown was clear that QB is the team’s priority.

“Right now, our obvious, most important issue will be with our quarterback,” Brown said. “It’s not quite ready or ripe yet, but it’s right down the track. We see the train coming.”

Orlando Brown Jr., Jessie Bates Absent From Training Camps

Two notable absences were widely expected as training camps open this week: Chiefs left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. and Bengals safety Jessie Bates. To no surprise, then, their respective teams will be without them for the beginning of summer practices. 

Brown’s absence was confirmed by NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo (video link). The news comes in the wake of details regarding the final offer made by the Chiefs to get the three-time Pro Bowler signed long-term. The proposed deal would have allowed Brown to reach his stated goal of becoming the league’s highest-paid offensive lineman, but issues related to the structure and guarantees led to the deal falling through.

Reports have since surfaced about the team’s frustrations regarding the process which has left both sides in their present situation. With Brown attached to a franchise tag valued at $16.7MM, head coach Andy Reid said, when asked about whether or not the 26-year-old would report to camp, “I don’t know that. So I don’t know whether he’s going to be here or not. If he’s here, great. And if he’s not, we move on.”

Bates, meanwhile, never came nearly as close as Brown did to inking a long-term extension, something which has been a point of contention dating back to last offseason. The 25-year-old has maintained throughout this process that he will not play on the franchise tag ($12.9MM), making his decision to stay away from camp (confirmed, on Twitter, by ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler) the next logical move in this saga.

In a similar vein to the Chiefs with respect to Brown, the Bengals offered a five-year deal with insufficient guarantees to gain much traction in finalizing an agreement. Bates’ absence will leave first-team reps available for Daxton Hillthe Bengals’ top draft pick and long-term successor in the likely event Bates is gone by no later than March. A trade is not considered to be in the cards at this point.

Since neither player has signed their tags, they will not be subject to fines as a result of their absences. Sitting out the campaign remains their only alternative to eventually signing and reporting, though, an eventuality which will be closely monitored in the coming days and weeks.

Bengals Unlikely To Trade Jessie Bates

The Bengals and safety Jessie Bates were unable to agree to terms on a new contract prior to the July 15 deadline for franchise-tagged players to sign an extension, and Bates is not planning to attend the team’s training camp. Still, Cincinnati does not plan to trade its fifth-year DB, as ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler said during an appearance on the Ari Meirov NFL Show (video link).

“The time to do it would’ve been before the deadline,” Fowler said (h/t Doug Kyed of Pro Football Focus (subscription required)). “Talking to people involved, I think the player would be very surprised, too. The Bengals haven’t shown a willingness to move him.”

Despite something of a down 2021 regular season, there surely would have been clubs interested in dealing for Bates and giving him a contract near the top of the safety market if the Bengals had entertained trade talks before July 15. Now, though, any acquiring club would be on the hook for the $12.9MM salary and cap number associated with Bates’ franchise tender, and not many teams can comfortably absorb such a charge at this point in the year. Plus, Cincinnati’s return for a safety who may turn into a one-year rental would likely be limited.

Bates has not yet signed his tender — which means that he cannot be fined for skipping training camp — but he will either need to sign it at some point or sit out the entire 2022 campaign, which seems highly unlikely. The only player in recent history to go that route was Le’Veon Bell, and with the benefit of hindsight, it is difficult to argue that was a good move for Bell’s career.

Cincinnati is also rostering Vonn Bell and first-round rookie Dax Hill, who took every OTA rep as the team’s starting free safety in Bates’ absence. The early returns on Hill have been positive, and while it should be expected that Bates will show up before he starts losing game checks, a parting of the ways in 2023 looks like a very real possibility.

Bell is also entering a platform year, and the Bengals may have found his eventual successor as well when they nabbed Tycen Anderson in the fifth round of this year’s draft. With quarterback Joe Burrow eligible for an extension at season’s end, Cincinnati is clearly looking for cost-controlled talent at non-premium positions.

Franchise Tag Roundup: Bengals, Chiefs, Cowboys, Dolphins Table Talks To 2023

For the first time since 2018, the summer franchise tag deadline day did not produce an extension. The past three years brought deadline-day deals for Taylor Moton, Derrick Henry, Chris Jones, Grady Jarrett and Robbie Gould. None of the four teams who still had tagged players could hammer out a deal Friday, however.

Bengals safety Jessie Bates, Chiefs left tackle Orlando Brown Jr., Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki and Cowboys tight end Dalton Schultz remain attached to their franchise tag prices ($12.9MM, $16.7MM, $10.9MM, $10.9MM, respectively). They are prevented from negotiating with their teams again until the 2022 season ends. The four teams can apply second franchise tags to these players in 2023, at 120% of their 2022 tag prices.

  • The Chiefs and Brown came closest to a deal. Although the Chiefs reached an extension agreement with Frank Clark upon trading a first-round pick and change for him in 2019, they postponed Brown negotiations last year. When the sides came to the table, after Brown earned a Pro Bowl nod for his first season as a full-time left tackle, the fifth-year blocker had a new agent and wanted a deal that made him the highest-paid offensive lineman. The Chiefs were willing to go there, but on their terms. What amounts to a dummy year in the contract’s final season led Brown to turn down a six-year, $139MM extension offer. Although failed tag talks often lead to separations the following year, it would surprise if the Chiefs — considering the compensation they parted with for Brown in 2021 — did not make a strong effort to extend Brown in 2023.
  • Less clarity emerged with the other three tag negotiations, but the Bengals‘ five-year offer and reported guarantee of around $17MM — which would be a fringe top-10 mark at the safety position — did not bring Bates to sign an extension. The fifth-year defender wanted to be the NFL’s highest-paid safety, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (video link). Minkah Fitzpatrick moved that number to $18.2MM per year this summer. Bates expressed interest in re-signing with the Bengals in 2021, after he posted a strong 2020 season. Following a less impactful 2021 regular season, Bates rebounded with critical playoff contributions. The Bengals, who drafted safety Daxton Hill in Round 1 and have Vonn Bell under contract for one more season, may be willing to let Bates test free agency a year from now. But Bell’s contract-year status may well keep Bates in the fold beyond 2022.
  • A lot of Schultz news came out this offseason, including a late rumor of a possible deal coming to fruition. But scant optimism about a Cowboys long-term deal surfaced. Dallas cuffed its top tight end and, with Schultz having signed his tender, he can be fined daily for not reporting to training camp. Although Schultz left OTAs to make a point about negotiations, he showed for Cowboys minicamp. The sides, however, appeared far apart. Ahead of Friday’s deadline, they had not negotiated in weeks. Contract length was an issue for Schultz’s camp. While Dak Prescott‘s contract is an exception, the Cowboys prefer five- or six-year extensions. No deadline-day magic occurred, and Schultz may become a bigger part of Dallas’ offense, with the team having traded Amari Cooper shortly after tagging its tight end.
  • It does not sound like substantial Gesicki-Dolphins talks occurred this offseason. Though, Gesicki was interested in an extension. After the former second-round pick broke through for a 703-yard, six-touchdown 2020 season, the team did not make an extension ahead of his 2021 contract year a priority. Gesicki then posted a 780-yard slate. That was enough to move Miami to keep the Penn State product off the free agent market. Gesicki should play a key part in a critical Tua Tagovailoa season, but with Tyreek Hill‘s $30MM-per-year contract now on Miami’s books, other Dolphins skill players may be affected.

The Browns (David Njoku), Buccaneers (Chris Godwin), Jaguars (Cam Robinson) and Packers (Davante Adams) saw their tagged players land extensions. Adams’ money, of course, came from the Raiders, who gave their new All-Pro weapon a five-year, $140MM extension — a deal that impacted Hill’s Chiefs talks and one that has two lofty nonguaranteed salaries in its final two years — after Adams voiced a preference to reunite with Derek Carr out west. Njoku becoming the NFL’s fourth-highest-paid tight end, after not matching either of Gesicki or Schultz’s best seasons, likely became an issue in the Cowboys and Dolphins’ respective negotiations.

Bates and Brown have not signed their tenders. This would allow each to skip training camp without being fined. The 2020 CBA prevents teams from waiving fines for holdouts, pointing to Gesicki and Schultz showing up. Bates is not expected to attend camp, and Brown hinted at staying away for a while. The Bengals and Chiefs’ tagged performers have until Nov. 15 to sign their tenders, or they cannot play in 2022. Multiple defensive linemen (Sean Gilbert and Dan Williams, the latter a Chiefs tag recipient) followed through with skipping seasons after being tagged in the late 1990s, but Le’Veon Bell (2018) is the only player to pass on a guaranteed salary by skipping a full season while attached to the tag this century.

Bengals, Jessie Bates Will Not Reach Deal; S Not Planning To Show For Training Camp

The Bengals’ franchise tag offseason with Jessie Bates has produced mostly reports of an impasse, leading to frustration from the talented safety. While 11th-hour momentum frequently comes on July 15 in these cases, it does not appear to be on tap in this one.

Bates and the Bengals have made “zero progress” on an extension ahead of Friday’s 3pm CT deadline, Tyler Dragon of USA Today tweets. This situation has headed to this place for a while, dating back to the 2021 offseason — when Bates expressed disappointment no extension emerged ahead of his contract year. It appears a season on the franchise tender — one Bates has not signed — will be his 2022 path.

It is not difficult to see why Bates is balking at the Bengals’ offer. Cincinnati is proposing a five-year deal that provides barely $16MM fully guaranteed, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com notes (on Twitter). This guarantee proposal would be well outside the top five at the position. Eight safeties signed for more than $20MM fully guaranteed. The Bengals do not guarantee salaries beyond the first year of contracts, joining the Packers on that front. This blueprint will be tested when the Bengals negotiate with Joe Burrow, but the team appears unwilling to break with procedure for Bates.

Until Bates signs his tender, he is not contractually obligated to attend Bengals training camp. That is the fifth-year safety’s plan, per Dragon, who adds Bates has no intentions to report to camp.

Once Bates signs his tender, he will be tied to a $12.9MM guaranteed salary. While Le’Veon Bell did stick to his guns and skip the 2018 season, no one else has tried this tactic since the 1990s. It should be expected Bates will play for the Bengals in 2022, but after the past two offseasons, it is not hard to see this relationship ending in 2023. A second Bates tag would cost the Bengals $15.5MM next year.

Bates, 25, has missed just two games throughout his career and has started every game he’s played. The former second-round pick has become one of the NFL’s top safeties, but a value gap has formed.

The Bengals appear unwilling to pay Bates a deal that places him on the Minkah FitzpatrickJamal Adams tier. Adams created that space by signing a $17.5MM-per-year deal in August 2021. There are four safeties (Marcus Williams, Kevin Byard, Eddie Jackson and Budda Baker) tied to deals ranging from $14MM AAV to $14.75MM per annum. While a compromise spot would exist in the Justin SimmonsHarrison Smith space ($15.25-$16MM per year), the salary cap is set to keep rising — after its 2021 dip — so Bates seeking a deal close to the top of the market makes sense.

Cincinnati has Vonn Bell entering a contract year as well, clouding the team’s outlook at the position. But first-round pick Daxton Hill should be expected to become a starter soon. He is signed through 2025, with a fifth-year option that could take the deal to 2026. A Bates big-ticket deal alongside Hill’s rookie contract would seem manageable, but the Bengals have perhaps their most notable extension in franchise history to consider in 2023. In addition to Burrow becoming extension-eligible next year, so will Tee Higgins, giving the AFC champions some long-term planning to do.

Four Players Remain On Franchise Tag; Extension Deadline Friday

The teams that still have players tied to the franchise tag have until 3pm CT Friday to reach extension agreements with the tagged performers. Otherwise, those players will play the 2022 season on the tag.

This year has brought a better success rate for tags leading to extensions, at least compared to the past two offseasons. Four of the eight players given the tag in March have signed extensions. That betters the 2020 (2-for-14) and 2021 (3-for-9) success rates. While Chris Godwin (Buccaneers), Cam Robinson (Jaguars), David Njoku (Browns) and Davante Adams (Packers; traded to Raiders) agreed to deals, the rest of this year’s group remains unsigned.

Here is how that quartet stands entering deadline week:

S Jessie Bates, Cincinnati Bengals

This looks like the most contentious of this year’s remaining tag situations. Bates, 25, discussed his disappointment about the lack of a Bengals extension ahead of his 2021 contract year and admitted not receiving a long-term deal affected him during the season. The former second-round pick, who rebounded with a postseason run featuring two interceptions and six pass deflections, voiced opposition to the franchise tag in February. Absent a long-term deal, the fifth-year defender is not expected to show for Bengals training camp. Bates, who has not signed his franchise tender, is tied to a $12.9MM tag figure. The Bengals hold $15.8MM in cap space.

Cincinnati has Vonn Bell on a $6MM-per-year deal, one that expires at season’s end, and used a first-round pick on safety Daxton Hill. The team has some notable players who become extension-eligible after 2022, notably Joe Burrow and Tee Higgins, and they may not be prepared to extend Bates on the level of Minkah Fitzpatrick ($18.2MM per year) or Jamal Adams ($17.5MM AAV). With the Bengals potentially eyeing Marcus Williams‘ five-year, $70MM Ravens deal, this impasse has created “bleak” negotiations leading up to the deadline.

The Bengals have taken care of homegrown defenders in the fairly recent past, giving both Carlos Dunlap and Geno Atkins two extensions and re-signing Dre Kirkpatrick in 2017. They also have let productive starters go, as evidenced by the departures of Andrew Whitworth, Kevin Zeitler, William Jackson and Carl Lawson. Zeitler signed a then-guard-record deal with the Browns in 2017; is Bates headed for free agency after a rental year?

T Orlando Brown Jr., Kansas City Chiefs

This situation has not produced as many headlines as Bates’ over the past year, but the Chiefs are a few days away from going to year-to-year with their left tackle. Brown is tied to a $16.7MM tag but is pursuing a deal that makes him the NFL’s highest-paid offensive lineman. Trent Williams, whom the Chiefs pursued in free agency last year before pivoting to a Brown trade, currently holds that title ($23MM per year). The league has three $20MM-AAV O-linemen (Williams, David Bakhtiari and Laremy Tunsil). For Brown to commit to a long-term deal, he would need to be the fourth. The Chiefs hold $14.3MM in cap space.

The Chiefs gave up their 2021 first-round pick for Brown, in a deal that also sent a Ravens second-rounder to Kansas City. Brown hired an agent that did not have an NFL client at that point, seeking a representative without relationships with front offices. The former Ravens third-rounder delivered an ominous message to his current team last month. Addressing the AFC West arrivals of Chandler Jones, Khalil Mack and Randy Gregory, Brown said it is “not the year to go into the season with a backup left tackle.” The sides have begun talks, which was the Chiefs’ plan upon acquiring Brown in 2021. But these could, as many tag stalemates do, go up to the deadline.

In moving from a right tackle the Ravens did not have in their long-term plans to a Chiefs Pro Bowler given the tag, Brown has shown a knack for maximizing his value. Like Bates, Brown has not signed his franchise tender, giving him the option of skipping training camp free of charge. The Chiefs have just one O-lineman, Joe Thuney, signed to a notable veteran deal. It would seem the franchise is prepared to give Brown a big-ticket extension. If the 26-year-old blocker is intent on surpassing Williams’ deal, it will test the Chiefs’ commitment.

TE Mike Gesicki, Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins might be eyeing a rental season here. Gesicki signed his franchise tender and has expressed interest in a long-term Miami deal. But the team may want to see more from the former second-round pick. Less than a week before the deadline, the sides have not done much work on an extension. Njoku’s $14.2MM-per-year pact can reasonably be viewed as a Gesicki target, with the Dolphins tight end producing two seasons — yardage-wise — that outpaced Njoku’s best year. Even before Njoku’s extension, the Dolphins and their tagged tight end were not close on a re-up. The Dolphins hold $16.5MM in cap space.

Mike McDaniel reshaped the Dolphins’ offense this offseason, and on just a $10.9MM franchise tender, the Penn State product makes sense as a rental piece. This represents a crucial year for Tua Tagovailoa, and the Dolphins kept one of his top targets off the market. Gesicki, 26, could join this year’s other tagged tight end as a 2023 free agent. It would cost the Dolphins 120% of this year’s tight end tag figure to cuff Gesicki again in 2023.

TE Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys frequently hammer out extensions, preferring deals that last at least five years. That preference has impacted the Schultz talks, with the Njoku contract undoubtedly factoring into this equation as well. Throughout the offseason, the Cowboys and Schultz have not been close on an agreement. Schultz, 26, did not finish OTAs with the team, citing dissatisfaction with his contract talks for leaving. He later circled back for mandatory minicamp. Despite little momentum emerging for much of the offseason, these negotiations still have a chance of producing an agreement ahead of Friday’s deadline. The Cowboys hold $22.5MM in cap space; Schultz has signed his tender.

Unlike Gesicki’s situation, the tight end tag talks in Dallas have continued throughout the offseason. The $10.9MM payment obviously represents a major raise for the former fourth-round pick, but as Blake Jarwin‘s injury issues have shown, players can lose value quickly. The Cowboys paid Jarwin ahead of his career-altering injuries, and Schultz has been a far more effective weapon, as evidenced by his 808-yard, eight-touchdown 2021 season. The Cowboys were wise to keep him off this year’s market, with Amari Cooper being traded and Michael Gallup unlikely to start the season on time.

If Schultz and the Cowboys cannot agree on terms by Friday, his status as a key Dak Prescott target stands to position the Stanford alum for a big payday as a 2023 UFA. Then again, the Cowboys have re-tagged multiple players — Prescott and DeMarcus Lawrence — over the past five years.

Latest On Bengals S Jessie Bates

The deadline for franchise players to sign multiyear contracts is less than a week away, and it doesn’t sound like a resolution is coming between the Bengals and safety Jessie Bates. According to NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo (and passed along by Grant Gordon of NFL.com), a positive outcome between the two sides “appears bleak at the moment.”

Garafolo can’t envision Bates attending Bengals training camp without a new deal. The safety was also absent during OTAs as the two sides tried to hammer out a deal, but back in May, we heard that negotiations had stalled. Bates was slapped with the franchise tag earlier this offseason, locking him in to a $12.9MM salary for the 2022 campaign. However, the safety made it clear that he has no intention of playing the upcoming season under the franchise tag as he pursues a long-term, top-of-market deal.

As Joel Corry of CBS Sports writes, there’s a good chance that the Bengals are citing Marcus Williams‘ $14MM AAV that he got from the Ravens via a five-year deal this offseason. However, Bates’ camp is likely pursuing a deal closer to Jamal Adams‘ contract with the Seahawks, which averages $17.5MM per year and could be worth up to $18MM per year. There’s also Minkah Fitzpatrick‘s deal with the Steelers that exceeded that $18MM AAV mark but is only half guaranteed. Garafolo opines that the Bengals will be unwilling to pay that much for their safety, meaning there’s at least a $4MM or $5MM annual difference in opinions.

The 25-year-old was the subject of contract talks last offseason, but negotiations stalled. Bates had established himself as an integral part of the Bengals’ defense to that point, earning second-team All-Pro honors in 2020. The regular season this past year was his worst statistically, though he notched a pair of interceptions during the team’s run to the Super Bowl.