Patriots Rumors: Brandon Aiyuk, Tee Higgins, Justin Jefferson and Courtland Sutton

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Bengals are toying with Tee Higgins, who has demanded a trade twice now

A lot of the conversation about a potential trade between the Bengals and Patriots for Tee Higgins has quieted down in recent weeks, but new revelations regarding their contract negotiations have reignited the possibility of a trade in the future.

The latest update on what appears to be a standoff between the Bengals and Higgins was published by Kelsey Conway of the Cincinnati Enquirer, who claims there was a clear discrepancy between what the receiver wants to be paid and how much the team has offered.

According to Conway, the offers were made last year and never came close to a $20 million annual salary, which is less than what they will pay him on the franchise tag in 2024. Since those talks, no further negotiations have taken place.

"The Bengals never approached the $20 million range for Higgins, sources told The Enquirer. Due to the original offer Cincinnati’s front office gave Higgins for his annual salary, the two sides never advanced to the next round of conversations which would have been about guaranteed money, sources also confirmed to The Enquirer."

It's a situation that makes absolutely no sense, hence why Higgins requested a trade for a second time the week leading to the draft.

The Bengals insist they want to keep one of their best offensive players during their championship window, but they continue to prove they're unwilling to pay him a competitive salary.

This could create an opportunity for the Patriots to swoop in and make a trade, as they have the financial means to pay Higgins what he's looking for and deserves. Cincinnati should deal him when he's in the highest demand or risk watching him walk in free agency for nothing.