Bengals will exercise fifth-year option on A.J. Green for 2015
At a minimum, Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green will be under contract through the 2015 season.
Based on the current collective bargaining agreement, all first-round rookies sign four-year deals with a fifth-year club option. For top-10 picks, the amount of the fifth-year option is the amount for the transition tag.
Team owner Mike Brown has stated (via Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer) that the team's intention is to do so before the May 3rd deadline:
"A.J. has one difference, you can tender him (with the transition tag -- $10.176 million for WR in 2014). That takes a big chunk of money. He'd probably get it anyway. It keeps him on the reservation, he's not going to be leaving. He's going to be here for not one more year but two more years. Even though we haven't tendered him yet our intention is to do that and put ourselves in position to turn to others such as [QB Andy] Dalton and we would like to turn to a couple more as well. We would like to get something long term but at least we know with A.J. we have two years. With some of the others we have one year."
As Dehner notes, Green will likely be one of eight top-10 picks from his 2011 draft class to be tendered for 2015. The group also includes Carolina's Cam Newton, Denver's Von Miller, Atlanta's Julio Jones and Arizona's Patrick Peterson among others. (The two notable exceptions are Blaine Gabbert and Jake Locker.)
Green set or tied career highs of 98 receptions, 1,426 yards and 11 touchdowns last season and only Randy Moss (4,163 yards) has more receiving yards in the first three years of a career than Green (3,833).
Although my fantasy football wide receiver rankings will be updated this upcoming week, Green will remain my No. 2 fantasy receiver heading into the 2014 season.