A.J. Green provides positive update on injured ankle, keeps Bengals future up in the air
A.J. Green opens up about possibly being placed with the franchise tag
A.J. Green's ninth season in the NFL looks like it's going to go by the wayside as the Bengals star receiver isn't poised to play in Cincinnati's final two games of the year. While 2019 may have been a lost season for Green, he did receive some positive news after meeting with Dr. Robert Anderson regarding his injured ankle.
Green relayed to Bengals.com's Geoff Hobson that he is on track to have a normal offseason of training and this injury won't further derail his career. The 31 year old has been rehabbing this injury for quite a bit and has recently been spotted doing some pre-game workouts on grass.
"It's finally turned the corner. It's been feeling better and better each week," Green said, via the official team website. "There were no setbacks. The plan was to go up there (to meet Anderson). He liked the way it looked. He said it's only a matter of time. It's not (ready) to play a game, but he was like, it's a good thing I didn't rush this thing."
While Green is starting to get positive results back, he, in all likelihood, won't suit up this year, which brings an entirely different storyline to the forefront. He is now set to enter unrestricted free agency this spring, possibly putting his Bengals career to a close. Green said that he would be open to helping usher in the next era of Bengals football as they are slated to have the No. 1 overall pick and possibly select LSU quarterback Joe Burrow, who just won the Heisman Trophy. However, he also kept things open-ended, saying, "We'll see. It's a business."
If Cincinnati chooses, it could prevent Green from entering free agency by placing the franchise tag on him and later attempt to work out a long term-deal. The receiver didn't seem overly opposed to the tag, but it hardly sounds like his top choice, either.
"I have no problem with the franchise (tag). I don't like it, but I'm not a guy that's going to sit out the whole year," Green said. "But at the end of the day, that shows me they're not committed to me. That's fine. They have a business they have to run. As the player I have my own business, so if you do that I have to protect myself.
"If you're not committed to me long-term, I understand. There are no hard feelings. You have a business to run. All great businesses face difficult decisions. I understand that. For me, I have to make a big decision as well."
First and foremost, Green needs to get that clean bill of health. Once he gets that and teams are confident in his ability to get back on the field, his free agent status will be one very much worth watching over the course of the offseason.
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