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Zac Taylor downplays absences of Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins

Bengals star receiver Ja'Marr Chase did not show up for the start of the team's organized team activities on Tuesday as he seeks a contract extension. The Bengals' No. 2 receiver, Tee Higgins, also is not participating in the offseason program as he has yet to sign the franchise tag. Higgins, too, wants a long-term deal.

Their absences leave Joe Burrow to work without his top wideouts, and with Trenton Irwin, Jermaine Burton, Andrei Iosivas and Charlie Jones. But coach Zac Taylor said it won't set back the development of the offense.

"[They] are still working hard elsewhere, and they’ll be back at the right times," Taylor said, via Ben Baby of ESPN, "and the beauty is we know those guys. We know what they're about and that they'll be ready and focused when it's time to come back."

The two receivers combined for 142 receptions for 1,872 yards and 12 touchdowns last season.

The Bengals lost their No. 2 wideout from 2023, Tyler Boyd, in free agency.

Defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins and right tackle Trent Brown also have been absent from the offseason program.

"They have the information, so I know that they're staying on top of it," Taylor said. "And when they get here and are able to get those reps. I know that those two guys are vets, and they'll be in a real good spot."