One question crossed my mind when Tyler Eifert opted to have back surgery and end his 2017 season. Have we seen the last of Eifert for the Bengals?

Hard to believe we’ve come to this. I distinctly remember having discussions with those inside the team where the point of many financial decisions the last two years was putting aside money to ensure they could pay Eifert the top tight end money he deserved.

He was destined to follow A.J. Green as one of the next top-market contracts the club would give out. Before this injury, I thought he was an easy choice for at least the $9.8M tight end franchise tag.

Now, not far removed from his Pro Bowl 2015 season, we’re left to wonder if his career in Cincinnati is over.

Jim and I discussed this fairly in-depth during an emergency, bye week BBP2 that posted yesterday. At the end of the conversation, we both said if you were forcing us to make a call today on whether he’s done with the Bengals, we both leaned toward saying it was over.

That’s not saying the Bengals and their 2013 first-round pick can’t reach an agreement on an incentive-based, one-year prove it deal this offseason. Maybe they will.

Or maybe Eifert’s association with CAA, chasing bigger dollars will sway him away from such things. Or you have to wonder if the Bengals are done counting on Eifert and being let down.