Andrew Whitworth frustrated by Bengals’ refusal to discuss extension

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Before the draft, Bengals left tackle Andrew Whitworth challenged the Bengals to “mess up and draft” a tackle with designs on replacing him in the lineup anytime soon.

It’s more than fair to say that the Bengals were not dissuaded by Whitworth’s words. They drafted Texas A&M tackle Cedric Ogbuehi in the first round and then followed up with Oregon tackle Jake Fisher in the second round, giving themselves a pair of potential successors to the 33-year-old Whitworth as he enters the final year of his contract.

Whitworth responded to the moves at the team’s headquarters on Monday and expressed disappointment that the Bengals neither told him about their plans at tackle nor responded to his request to discuss an extension of his contract.

“I want to be above and beyond and do more than the average guy in this locker room. But it’s hard to do that when the feeling’s not reciprocated. Really, it’s just a one-way street,” Whitworth said, via “[When the team says] we’d like you to be the leader of our football team, but we’d also like the best situation possible for us to talk to you when we want to, that’s a one-way street and not really top-of-the-line in customer service. But it is what it is. Hopefully one day that conversation will be had and I’ll be here.”

Whitworth doesn’t seem to hold any grudges against the new players, both of whom he invited over to his house to watch the Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao fight. Ogbuehi had already left town, but Fisher got a chance to spend some time with a locker room leader on his new team.

That kind of invitation is why Whitworth became a team leader, although those qualities only buy you so much time when a team makes it clear that they’re investing in a different future at the position.

58 responses to “Andrew Whitworth frustrated by Bengals’ refusal to discuss extension

  1. It is a business but very classy and sounds like a good leader to treat his new possible replacement like a new friend. Hope Bengals do whats right

  2. Whitworth is the man, but the Bengals will not pay him top tackle money to stick around for the latter part of his career.

  3. I see an extension coming (maybe 2 years), but A. Smith might as well start fixing up his resume as he’s got 1 year left as a Bengal.

  4. I’m sorry Andrew that’s because you aren’t as good as Joe Thomas or Alex Mack.

    Plus, your owner is ridiculously cheap too. Hit FA, you’ll never win a playoff with Dalton anyways.

  5. Why won’t they discuss their extension?

    Here, I’ll do it: 513-621-3550 x 1 for main desk.

  6. If they’re not going to give him an extension, at the very least the team owes him an honest conversation and explanation of the direction they want to go. Whitworth has done too much for the Bengals to treat him like this.

  7. How much are you getting paid again to play in the NFL ? Shut up, be thankful and be smart with what you do with your money. Play hard and you’ll get either that extension or a nice FA contract.

  8. He knows as well as we do that they are going to move him to LG when Ogbuehi is ready, and that they want to pay him like a G on a new contract.

    That’s why he is pushing for an extension while he is still a T. He should try, but it isn’t going to happen.

  9. My guess is that they’re going to want to pay him guard money with the hopes that he can slide inside if the two rookies are ready. I have no doubt he’s in the plans for their future, but maybe not at elite tackle money like he may want. A good line has two excellent tackles, 2 excellent guards and one swing man that can play both when someone goes down or in certain packages. Whit is the swingman in a perfect world for bengals fans, playing guard unless someone goes down with an injury.

  10. how can he be shocked that that the ben-girls drafted 2 tackles? the offensive line was “turrable” last year . a team that drafts a replacement for a 33 year old player is doing the right thing. all teams look at the roster and their needs and draft accordingly …ben-girls think o line is a weakness and addressed that need … duh!

  11. Of course it isn’t good customer service. You’re an employee. Drafting two tackles back to back should be enough writing on the wall. I’d rather pay AJ Green than an offensive tackle who’s best years are behind him.

  12. Let me guess…
    If it’s the Patriots, they are shrewd, calculating, business-saavy, smart.
    If it’s the Bengals, they are cheap, disloyal, cheap, dumb, cheap.

  13. He’s surprised by the “one way street” attitude?!?!?

    He does have some clue as to who signs his checks, right?

  14. Let me guess…
    If it’s the Patriots, they are shrewd, calculating, business-saavy, smart.
    If it’s the Bengals, they are cheap, disloyal, cheap, dumb, cheap.

    Probably true. But it’s not like the Bengals haven’t earned their reputation for being cheap over the years…

    and the Patriots have probably earned the benefit of the doubt on their personnel moves.

  15. “But it’s not like the Bengals haven’t earned their reputation for being cheap over the years…

    Spoken like someone who knows about the Bengals only what the sports media has told him.

  16. Be a leader and stop the whining, there is plenty of time to discuss an extension. Three of their starting O-Linemen are Free-Agents after this season. They did the best thing for the team’s future by drafting two top shelf Tackles, as there is only so much cash to go around and they have a lot of players to resign.

  17. Whitworth is a great LT.He allowed 0 sacks and 1 QB hit last season according to PFF.But he was also the oldest starting LT in the league last season so he`s not going to get another 3-4 years at starting LT money.Also the Bengals have a ton of FA after this season and their not going to resign any of them until their done putting together this season`s team.
    I understand why he would want a deal now but the team has to start with younger guys before they get to resigning 34 year olds.As quickly as players start getting old in the NFL that is just good business.
    I love Whit.I hope he resigns and moves to guard in a season or two but just because getting himself signed is top priority to him doesn`t mean it should be for the team.They have been great at resigning their own recently so calling them cheap is stupid.
    They are a top spending team since the new CBA.

  18. thegenoatkinsdiet says:
    “But it’s not like the Bengals haven’t earned their reputation for being cheap over the years…

    Spoken like someone who knows about the Bengals only what the sports media has told him.


    Blaming the media is a cop out. I live in Cincy. If you don’t know the Bengals and Mike Brown are cheap than you live under a rock. Still the only team in the NFL without a decent practice facility. That’s why they have to get on a bus and drive to UC in order to practice indoors. It’s a joke. Most division III football programs have an indoor facility these days.

  19. Dude, the Bengals didn’t draft your replacement. They drafted TWO replacements. This is pretty much “my girlfriend hasn’t broken up with me, but she won’t answer the phone when I call and she’s been hanging out with this other guy a bunch.”

    Read between the lines, Andrew.

  20. “We’re heading for the last Roundup”. Get real man. They drafted 2 tackles. Just hope that you make it to the first game and get your pay guaranteed for the whole year. If they are as cheap as their fans say, they’ll cut you in the last cut down and then try to get you to resign without the guarantee.

  21. @vincentbojackson
    We’re talking contracts, and you drag out a practice facility? C’mon man.

    When the Bengals like a guy, they will pay. Levi Jones. Willie Anderson. Carson Palmer. Andy Dalton. Rey Maualuga. Just off the top of my head. I’d think someone who lives in Cincy would know that. But you cling to whatever helps you sleep at night.

  22. Wow he has really been acting out of character lately, mouthing-off to the media.
    Keep it in house.
    My gosh, you are 33 and still have a year on your contract just like a whole bunch of Bengals.

  23. Whitworth has a legitimate beef. He’s been stellar on the field (despite what pro bowl voters think, he was the best tackle in football last year) + he’s been asked to take on a leadership role off the field. He’s expected to be the face of the organization with charity work in the community, he’s always the guy the media runs to after a tough loss because they know he’ll be a pro + he’s had to be the president of the Andy Dalton fan club and take on the role of enforcer when teams go after him with a cheap shot.

    It should not be too much to ask that the Bengals give him a heads up on their intent to draft a tackle early and shoot him straight with contract negotiations. He’s not a running back so I don’t buy that he can’t be a top tier guy for another 2-3 years if he stays healthy. By all accounts he’s in the best shape of his life. He’s in his prime until he shows otherwise.

  24. For a smart guy, Andrew is sounding pretty naive. Mike Brown is probably laughing when he reads about you wanting to discuss an extension. Think of a number, then multiply it by zero. He is apparently very proud of his reputation as the cheapest NFL owner.

  25. I just keep wondering why guys think they need an extension when they have a whole year left on their current deals. Hell, if I remember correctly he just signed a 2 year extension in 2013, so he’s only played one of those 2 years and he wants to do it again? Maybe wait a little while til the draft picks are signed and this year’s needs are addressed. Then the team can use the left over cap space to start getting some deals done.

    I recently saw that The Bengals had $19M in space prior to signing rookies. That’s not a ton, and I’m sure they’ll clear up some with cuts, but they need a bunch of it to front load AJ Green’s deal so Whit might have to wait awhile.

  26. Do we really think of this guy when talking about the best tackles in the game?please…

  27. Let me guess…
    If it’s the Patriots, they are shrewd, calculating, business-saavy, smart.
    If it’s the Bengals, they are cheap, disloyal, cheap, dumb, cheap.

    Gee, and I thought I was the only one fed up with the smug Patsie trolls. Very well said and on point…good job.

  28. “@vincentbojackson

    Blaming the media is a cop out. I live in Cincy. If you don’t know the Bengals and Mike Brown are cheap than you live under a rock. Still the only team in the NFL without a decent practice facility. That’s why they have to get on a bus and drive to UC in order to practice indoors. It’s a joke. Most division III football programs have an indoor facility these days.”

    Being from Cincy you should know that the Bengals just built a new indoor practice field and weight room….. just saying

  29. Just prove them wrong, Whit. Play so well that the rookies never get on the field. The NFL is indeed a business but it’s also a meritocracy.

  30. No disrespect but the Bengals did by far the smartest thing they could’ve done by getting two top tackles. Dre is gone after this year , whit has been a stud but as good as he thinks he feels, father time always wins. For fans to say he can play at an elite level 3-4 more years are just naive. The move is too get the youngsters ready to man both tackle positions and slide whit inside to where he was always meant to play and Bethe swing guy in case of am injury. Pay him like!w a top guard and give him a good bonus to sign. But guys like aj, iloka and zeitler will be a priority over big whit.hope it all works out. Mik e brown and marvin have been terrific over the past 5 years. Fans if u live in cincy or not (like that gives u some special insight) can see the difference they are crushing it. Its only a matter of time before this team is elite. If anything, living in cincy has desensitized you from hope but this team has come very far since palmer left.

  31. I’m really confused by both his attitude and the general questioning of their drafting two offensive tackles. Wasn’t anyone paying attention last year when they had NO ONE to back up anyone on the line? When they played Marshall Newhouse at RT? When they signed Eric Winston off the street? Maybe they’ll sign Whitworth and Smith or one of them (Whitworth) or neither; but they addressed a glaring need and suddenly have quality depth on the line, something that supposedly everyone says a good team needs. I just don’t get it.

  32. Geez people…who was the top rated LT last season? Who gave up NO sacks last year? # 77. Andrew Whitworth.

    Here’s the thing: he started as a guard, he can finish as a guard, but right now, at age 33 or not, he’s the best LT in the game. Fierce, quick, smart and nasty.

  33. Being from Cincy you should know that the Bengals just built a new indoor practice field and weight room….. just saying

    I live in Cincy and that is not an indoor practice facility that they built.

  34. @mysterytonite – we haven’t seen a playoff win in 23 years and Marvin has been here for 12 of them. So are you going to always drink the kool-aid and think everything is great? I guess I’m not happy as satisfied as the rest of you.

  35. I’m sure they will extend Whit. Smith, not so much. I’m sure Smith will have a good year this year because it’s his contract year and then he’ll go to the highest bidder.

  36. Anyone who keeps saying the “Bengals”or “Mike Brown” is cheap when it comes tore-signing players are either just saying it for effect or are genuinely stupid.

    Go look at the contracts the Bengals offer to players, go and check the Guaranteed Money and while your at it check how the money is stacked over the term of the contract.

    Then there is the fact that its rare for someone to sign a big contract with the Bengals and not play it out (Robert Geathers) good recent example.

    You can sign a $40 million deal with the Bengals and your likely to see it all, or you can sign a $50 – $60 million deal with another team and probably be lucky to see half of it.

  37. Lets get a few facts out there.

    As it stands :

    Whitworth is still the 6th Highest Paid Tackle in the NFL on a deal he signed in 2011

    Geno Atkins is the 4th Highest Paid DT in the NFL on the deal he signed in 2014

    Leon Hall is the 8th Highest Paid Corner in the NFL on the deal he signed in 2011

    Both are DE’s are currently 13th and 20th paid in the NFL.

    Then there are the other examples like Dalton that are on very well compensated Contracts and A.J Green who is on the last year of his rookie deal earning $10.1 million this year will likely be top 5 Paid WR by this time next season.

    Its a complete nonsense to think the Bengals don’t pay, its something the un-educated public and ESPN watchers believe.

    We just don’t overpay players like the Cowboys and Redskins and then have to get them 2 or 3 years in and end up in Cap Hell. Whitworth has been handsomely paid for his services and at 33 he would likely get another 2 year deal at a very good rate.

  38. A few Other i missed.

    4-3 OLB’s

    Vontaze Burfict – 3rd Highest Paid

    Rey Maualuga – 7th Highest Paid

    Yeh we are Cheap ….Idiots !

  39. Whitworth has a right to be upset. He’s by far the main man for leadership on this team. The locker room wouldn’t be as solid as it is if it weren’t for him. Nobody else steps up like he does. How many times has he let a rookie live with him during camp and such so they can get acclimated to the city and find their own place? He invited his possible replacement to his house for a boxing match. How much classier can you be? He deserves at least a conversation by the Bengals on what their plans are. He was arguably the best tackle in the league last year. And he’s 33! He is showing no signs of slowing down. Why burn a bridge with a proven stud tackle and hope to god a player with a bum ACL recovers enough to even sniff at being able to fill Whit’s shoes? I think the Bengals are blowing this big time. The man deserves the respect of a talk at least! Look what he has done for this org! Oh and to all those who call the Bengals cheap, please see Dalton, Dunlap, Atkins, Hall, Boling….Shall I go on?

  40. You’re right he does have a right to be a tad upset but i guess every veteran deep down is going to be a bit cheesed off when he see’s the light at the end of the career tunnel.

    But lets get this right. The Media is blowing this up a tad, he isn’t so upset that he is disconnecting himself from the Franchise. He just wants to get it out there that he wanted a deal done by now. This media explosion on the situation is not going to help him in any way. Personally i expect this to get sorted behind closed doors with both sides being happy. That’s as long as Whitworth doesn’t expect to be paid like an elite Tackle in his prime. Because he isn’t any more and when he was he got paid accordingly. He will now be paid like a top tier Veteran Tackle on a multiple ear deal. If he is after a 4 – 5 year deal then he has nobody to blame but himself when it fails.

  41. This really isn’t that hard…

    Whit has one multi-year contract left, and he wants to maximize it. The only leverage he has is the quality of his play and public sentiment. Time is more likely to hurt than help his play, so he wants to talk now. Smart business.

    The Bengals have a bunch of contracts to rework in the next 12 months, not just Whit’s. Cash invested in a quality aging player is cash that isn’t going to quality young player. So they want to wait until they don’t need him at the high dollar position. Smart business.

    Everything else is theater for fanboys and trolls.

  42. Has Whitworth lost his marbles?

    First, before the draft, he dares the Bengals to draft his replacement. Who does that?

    Second, after the draft he complains the Bengals didn’t tell them they were going to draft a tackle in the first two rounds. Honestly, do the Bengals know who will be available picking at 21? Or do they try to pick the best player available?

    Third, did Terrance Newman cry when the Bengals picked Kirkpatrick and Dennard or did he just play his butt off and keep the kids on the bench? Whitworth’s future is in his hands and his ability to stay healthy and play at a top level.

    Fourth, how many people remember Levi Jones (the Bengals terrific tackle before Whitworth)? 34 is 34. He cannot expect to play a kid’s game forever. He plays a physically demanding position and the Bengals would be foolish not to have a competent back up for him. If he gets hurt and Dalton gets injured because no one can play left tackle, doesn’t that hurt the entire team?

    Finally, what the heck is he talking about loyalty? How much money does this guy make, $8-10 million a year? That obviously isn’t enough loyalty for him. Although Mr. Whitworth is a very bright and generous man, what other occupation was he going to do that set him and his family up for life by the age of 34?

  43. loubearkane says:
    May 4, 2015 3:34 PM
    Play out your contract then sign with their rival

    Yes, I hope Pittsburgh signs him to a SIX YEAR deal!

    Better to thank them for all they did and let go of them a year too soon than a year too late. I hope Big Whit handles his future like the pro he has been so he is welcomed back to team events when his playing days are done. Whit’s good people.

  44. Extension will likely be predicated on his willingness to move to OG. We all know OG will mean a paycut, but many veterans have to take cuts to stay with their teams. He was great at the G spot and has been slowing down at the OT position for several years.

    Andre Smith is gone as he can’t stay healthy (and in shape). The Bengals need a full time RT.

    With the drafted Ts the Bengals have great depth and versatility on the line.

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