A.J. Green in no 'rush' for new contract after fruitless talks with Bengals

CINCINNATI -- A.J. Green said Monday his representatives and the Cincinnati Bengals met in February to discuss signing him to a long-term deal.

With Green still slated to hit free agency next March, the meeting at the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis was apparently fruitless. The four-time Pro Bowl wideout is starting his fifth season with uncertainty about his long-term future in Cincinnati looming.

And he's OK with that.

"I'm not in a rush," said Green, who will make $10.2 million this year as part of a fifth-year option the team elected to exercise in May 2014.

Green cited the fact that fellow 2011 first-round draft pick Julio Jones didn't have a new contract as a reason he's in no hurry. Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas, two top-tier receivers who were slated to hit free agency this year, also haven't gotten extensions. Instead, their teams franchise-tagged them for the coming season. Green is in no hurry to set the market at the position.

"Nobody got signed, so I'm not in a rush to be the first one," he said.

Green spoke during a media availability period at Paul Brown Stadium as the Bengals opened offseason workouts. Earlier this offseason he expressed interest in wanting a new deal this year. Now he has no problem waiting.

"I've got my option, and that's enough for now," Green said. "I'll just focus on football, and everything else will take care of itself."

In what he termed a "disappointing season," Green caught 69 passes for 1,041 yards and six touchdowns in 2014. He also missed parts of six games with a series of injuries. The fumble he had late in the regular-season finale at Pittsburgh still bugged him because had he held on to the football, he thought the Bengals could have rallied to beat the Steelers and win the AFC North.

On that same play, Green suffered a concussion that forced him to miss the Bengals' 26-10 playoff loss at Indianapolis a week later.

Green isn't the only upcoming free agent the Bengals have; 27 other players on the current 68-man roster will be eligible for free agency next spring. Of them, 12 started at least one game for the Bengals last season.