Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase (1) is tackled by...

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase (1) is tackled by Baltimore Ravens safety Ar'Darius Washington (29) during an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023, in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Bengals have exercised the fifth-year option for star receiver Ja'Marr Chase, the team said Wednesday, April 24, 2024. Credit: AP/Jeff Dean

CINCINNATI — The Cincinnati Bengals have exercised the fifth-year option on the rookie contract for star wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase, the team said Wednesday.

The 24-year-old Chase is entering the fourth year of the deal. By extending his rookie contract to a fifth year, the Bengals will have more time to reach a long-term deal with the 2021 AP Offensive Rookie of the Year who figures into their long-term plans.

Chase, who was a teammate of Cincinnati quarterback Joe Burrow at LSU in 2019, has 268 receptions for 3,717 yards and 29 touchdowns, leading the team in each category in each of the past three seasons.

Last season, Chase had a career-high 100 receptions, tying for the second most in a season in team history, for 1,216 yards and seven TDs.

Tee Higgins, the team's No. 2 receiver who was drafted the year before Chase, will play this season with the franchise tag, keeping him in Cincinnati for at least one more season. He'll make $21.8 million.

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