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Bengals Coach Zac Taylor And Duke Tobin Blast Tee Higgins Trade Rumors As "Nonsense" And "Ridiculous"

I'm so glad Bengals leadership put an end to this speculative bullshit that Tee Higgins is somehow going to get traded. Cincinnati would be crazy to let Higgins out of this offseason without a second contract secured. He's entering the last year of his rookie deal in 2023, so his payday is the undisputed No. 2 priority behind Joe Burrow's likely market-setting extension.

Higgins has gotten dinged up pretty good the past two years, yet has still managed to eclipse 1,000 yards receiving. That's impressive considering how large of a target share Ja'Marr Chase commands. one of the more encouraging parts of the Bengals' 2022 campaign was how Higgins stepped up as the WR1 when Chase was out for four games. In the last few of those games (all Cincinnati wins) Tee racked up 23 receptions for 322 yards on 30 targets.

So uhh...of course anyone with a brain who actually knows Bengals football knows Higgins isn't going anywhere. Like I love me some PFF but...

This franchise is not the penny-pinching operation it was demonized for being over many years. Joey B and Tee pulled up in that same 2020 draft class in the first two rounds — like a 5.0 version of the AJ Green-Andy Dalton double dip in 2011. They've helped lift the organization to two straight AFC title game berths and even a trip to the Super Bowl that nearly ended in victory.

It's pretty clear Taylor and Tobin have an appreciation for the unique core they have. This team is made up of so many fundamentally sound, smart players who aren't yet household names but will only continue to approach that status with plays like these…

Love how Tobin, too, says "They want a receiver? GO FIND YOUR OWN!" which is such a baller quote because he's, you know, hit fucking grand slams by drafting Higgins and Chase. Obviously Tyler Boyd has turned into a phenomenal, consistent veteran leader, mentor and clutch producer on the gridiron as well.

When you can draft that well at wide receiver, what a blessing it is. In my head I'm already looking down the road a little bit with Boyd and the possibility of moving off him in favor of a quicker, faster guy. My heart says stick with Boyd at least one more year, because this receiver trio as a collective is something truly special.

While I'm going to wait for free agency and the draft to play out to make any bold proclamations about how the Bengals will fare in 2023, I can tell you it's refreshing to know everyone's on the same page. Tee Higgins is going nowhere. So cease with your mock trades and hypotheticals about him playing anywhere other than Cincinnati. Us Bengals folk have known this. Time for the rest of you to join reality.

Random: As I plugged in the photo of Tee for this blog, it struck me that he looks like he could definitely be related to Cory Henry, the Grammy-nominated musician who once did this on keys and still has me convinced he's somehow hacked The Matrix…

Twitter @MattFitz_gerald/TikTok