Wed. Feb 21st, 2024

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It’s unlikely that Tee Higgins won’t be a free agent this offseason. But in the event that he is, Deshaun Watson wants Higgins to consider joining him in Cleveland. 

Watson recently made a pitch for Higgins to join the Cleveland Browns, who made the playoffs last season despite season-ending injuries to Watson and perennial Pro Bowl running back Nick Chubb. 

“We wanna pass the ball. That’s what we’re gonna do,” Watson told quarterback trainer Quincy Avery on Avery’s podcast, via Sports Illustrated. “We’re gonna pass the ball a lot.”

Watson then spoke indirectly to Higgins, who has played an integral role in the Bengals’ success since coming to Cincinnati in 2020. 

“We’re gonna take good care of you,” Watson said. “The Cleveland fans are gonna love you to death. We got the Clemson ties. We ain’t get to play with each other, but this is our opportunity.”

Will Watson get his wish? It doesn’t seem likely, at least not this offseason. 

The Bengals will likely apply the franchise tag on Higgins, which will keep him in Cincinnati for the 2024 season. Beyond that, however, is anyone’s guess. 

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Cincinnati’s players and front office have been public about how much they value Higgins, who caught two touchdowns in the Bengals’ three-point loss to the Rams in Super Bowl LVI. But the team also has to re-sign fellow wideout Ja’Marr Chase, who will likely command a salary that will make him one of the league’s top-paid receivers. 

Higgins won’t get as much as Chase, but he will still likely receive a salary that will pay him somewhere near $20 million per season. His current market value is set at four years at $18.6 million per season, according to Spotrac. That’s a bargain for a player of Higgins’ caliber. 

There’s no denying that Higgins would make the Browns’ offense better. The unit finished 10th in the NFL in scoring last season despite their injuries. The offense was led by wideout Amari Cooper and tight end David Njoku, who both submitted Pro Bowl campaigns. 

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