Seven-time Pro Bowl wide receiver A.J. Green is set to hit free agency this offseason, but the Cincinnati Bengals don't seem poised to let him hit the open market. While Green didn't play a single snap in 2019, the Bengals are going to work to re-sign the 31-year-old, and could even utilize the franchise tag, according to NFL.com. In a recent interview with Tyler Dragon and Lindsay Patterson on the "Bengals Beat Podcast," head coach Zac Taylor reiterated that Green is a player who is part of the Bengals' future plans.
"He's a guy that we're excited about to have part of this team, first and foremost. That's what matters right now," Taylor said, via The Score. "As we go through the offseason, we'll figure out how it best fits. But right now, we expect him to be a part of the team. We want him to be a part of the team."
"He's certainly been a valuable member for the last couple years and done some great things. I'm excited to coach him, really for the first time this next season."
Green has played in just nine games over the past two seasons, as different foot injuries have sidelined him for a considerable amount of time. Last July, he went down with an ankle injury in training camp, and while an initial X-ray showed no signs of fracture, he did suffer torn ligaments that required a clean-up procedure. The original thought was that he would miss the entire preseason, but soon that timeline drifted into the regular season.
Almost every week, Taylor was asked about the status of Green, and that line of questioning only intensified around the trade deadline. It almost looked like Green was orchestrating some sort of odd holdout since his contract expired this offseason, but according to this latest interview from Taylor, it sounds like the Bengals have no plans to let Green go.
When healthy, Green has been one of the best receivers in the NFL over the past decade. In 111 career games, he has recorded 602 receptions for 8,907 yards and 63 touchdowns.