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A.J. Green optimistic about Bengals’ Super Bowl return with current core: ‘They’re likely to reunite there’

A.J. Green is among the greatest players to ever don a Cincinnati Bengals uniform, so that it made a lot of sense that the Arizona Cardinals receiver was pulling for his former team to win the Super Bowl this past year. Green returned to Cincinnati last weekend for the very first time since leaving the Bengals following the 2020 season, believing the young Bengals aren’t just one-year wonders.

“They have got an excellent team. It’s crazy because we’d great teams, but they have got a genuine good team,” Green said. “I was cheering for them, and I talked to TB (Tyler Boyd), I talked to Jessie (Bates III), talked to Tee (Higgins), Joe (Burrow) because they continued that playoff run, plus they got hot.

“They will reunite there. They have got an excellent team which will be competitive every year.”

Burrow was the catalyst behind the Bengals’ success, establishing himself among the game’s best quarterbacks. He completed a league-high 70.4% of his passes for 4,611 yards with 34 touchdowns to 14 interceptions for a 108.4 passer rating. Burrow also led the NFL in yards per attempt (8.9) despite being sacked a league-high 51 times in the standard season. The Bengals also had a 1,000-yard rusher in Joe Mixon, a record-setting rookie receiver in Ja’Marr Chase and a 1,000-yard receiver in Tee Higgins. Tyler Boyd also had over 800 yards last season, emerging among the leaders of the young offense.

“He’s a leader now — a leader for the reason that room,” Green said of Boyd. “I knew he’d be from day one, once he got his opportunity he would be considered a great player. That’s ideal for him. He’s a fantastic receiver, and he’s got those guys rolling. I’m happy for him.

“They have got an excellent team. They have got a, great core that will be good for a long period. … It’s fun merely to see those guys. We text on / off through the season, so that it was good to see them personally.”

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Green is second in Bengals franchise history in receptions (649), receiving yards (9,430) and receiving touchdowns (65) — trailing only Chad Johnson in each category. He made the Pro Bowl in all of his first seven years and recorded six 1,000-yard seasons in his 10 seasons with the team.

In Green’s one season with the Cardinals, he finished with 54 catches for 848 yards with three touchdowns and averaged 15.7 yards per catch. The Cardinals brought the 34-year-old Green back on a one-year deal this offseason.

“I couldn’t select a better spot to be with this particular organization,” Green said. “Kliff (Kingsbury) is unbelievable, a fantastic coach just how he runs that organization. It is a blessing to go from there (Cincinnati) to Arizona to help keep playing, keep prolonging my career, and Personally i think like I could still play for some time.

“My numbers were never a large thing for me personally. My own goal is merely to win. I had a fairly good season this past year, and now this season entering year two in this offense, I’m convenient, and I believe I’ll be far better.”

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