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Report: Bengals' Jessie Bates Plans to Hold Out Without New Contract

Erin WalshJuly 15, 2022

Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Cincinnati Bengals safety Jessie Bates "has no intentions" of participating in training camp this summer or playing the 2022 campaign on the franchise tag, according to Josina Anderson of CBS Sports.

The Bengals placed the $12.91 million franchise tag on Bates in March, and the two sides have yet to agree to terms on an extension by Friday's deadline.

Ian Rapoport @RapSheet

For the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Bengals?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Bengals</a> and star S Jessie Bates: The team's final offer guaranteed Bates only $4M more than what he would get if he eventually signs the franchise tag. Big difference is the tag locks Bates in for one year while the Bengals' offer locked him in for 5 additional years.

The news comes after NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported last week that Bates and the Bengals were not expected to reach an agreement on a long-term contract. The two sides have until 4 p.m. ET Friday to strike a deal, or Bates will likely be holding out in 2022.

Bates said during an appearance on NFL Now (via NFL.com's Adam Maya) in February that he was against playing on the franchise tag, so it's no surprise he might not play at all next season:

"Hopefully, I'm not under a franchise tag. That's something that needs to be discussed as NFLPA a little bit. Some of the top guys got hurt under a franchise tag. It's tough; you only get one shot at this. You just got to play your cards right, I guess you could say."

Spotrac estimated Bates' market value at $80.2 million over a five-year deal. An average annual salary of $16 million per year would put him third among the NFL's highest-paid safeties behind only Minkah Fitzpatrick and Jamal Adams.

A second-round pick in the 2018 draft, Bates has been a staple in Cincinnati's secondary. His teammates have voiced their support for the Wake Forest product to receive an extension worthy of his value.

"Yeah, we've been talking all offseason. Everybody in that locker room wants Jessie to get what he deserves. We know as a team, he's a cornerstone piece for this franchise," veteran cornerback Mike Hilton told Kelsey Conway of the Cincinnati Enquirer in May.

Bates appeared in 15 games last season (while missing the first game of his career), posting one interception, four pass breakups, one fumble recovery and 88 tackles. He also appeared in all four postseason games, recording two interceptions, six pass breakups and 20 tackles.

If the 2020 second-team All-Pro does not play in 2022, it will be a huge loss for Cincinnati.

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