Bates said he intends to take it day-by-day when asked if he'll join the Bengals for voluntary OTAs, Ben Baby of ESPN.com reports. The Bengals placed their franchise tag on Bates at the beginning of March. The two sides have until July 15 to work out a multi-year deal, but if they don't, Bates will operate under the terms of the franchise tag during the 2022 campaign. His comments suggest he may be willing to sit out if he's unhappy with the negotiation progress.
The Bengals on Monday used their franchise tag on Bates, Ben Baby of ESPN.com reports. Bates totaled 20 tackles (11 solo), six pass deflections and two interceptions across four postseason games during the team's Super Bowl run. With the move, Cincinnati will have until July 15 to work out a multi-year contract with the safety, but if they don't, Bates will operate under the terms of the franchise tag during the 2022 campaign.
Bates recorded 88 tackles (67 solo), four pass breakups, one interception and one fumble recovery across 15 appearances in 2021. Bates failed to reach the 100-tackle mark for the first time in his young career this season, though he did miss two contests. The 2018 second-round pick remains an every-down defensive starter for Cincinnati and a notable IDP asset, but fantasy managers will hope for a more consistent 2022 campaign. This offseason, however, Bates is currently scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent.
Bates totaled eight tackles (six solo) and one interception during Sunday's 34-31 loss to the Jets. Sunday's performance was Bates' fourth game with at least eight tackles this season. He now has 50 stops through seven contests this year and is on pace for his fourth straight 100-plus tackle campaign. The 24-year-old safety's fantasy value has a solid floor due to his tackling totals, but if he can continue to force turnovers, then his fantasy ceiling will grow exponentially.
Bates (neck) was a full participant at Wednesday's practice, Jay Morrison of The Athletic reports. Bates missed last Thursday's win over the Jaguars, but he's back at practice with no limitations Wednesday. The 24-year-old should reclaim his starting role at free safety this weekend against Green Bay.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|3||09/25||@New York Jets||30|
|6||10/16||@New Orleans Saints||17|
|13||12/04||Kansas City Chiefs||28|
|15||12/18||@Tampa Bay Buccaneers||27|
|16||12/24||@New England Patriots||10|