Former Clemson football wide receiver Tee Higgins had his moments over his first two seasons as a Cincinnati Bengal, hauling in 141 receptions for 1,999 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Often playing second fiddle to Ja’Marr Chase in the Bengal offense, Higgins had found a comfortable spot and made an occasional appearance on the highlight reels.
That all changed when Chase was injured in week 7 of the season and Higgins has shown that he’s a star in his own right, without Chase in the lineup.
In Cincinnati’s last three games, all wins, Higgins has 23 receptions on 30 targets, for 322 yards and a touchdown, while drawing rave reviews for his route running.
Chase is expected to be back this week as the Bengals meet Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs, but don’t count on Higgins fading back into the background.
On the season Higgins has 57 receptions for 826 yards and 4 touchdowns through 11 games, which projects to 88 receptions, 1,277 yards and 6 touchdowns on a full 17 game NFL season.
Higgins played for Clemson from 2017-2019 and totaled 135 receptions for 2,448 yards and 27 touchdowns for the Tigers, while winning one National Championship and playing for another.
Former Clemson football star Tee Higgins has helped the Bengals thrive
The Bengals have gone 3-1 with Chase out of the lineup and are 7-4 and tied for first in the AFC North with the Baltimore Ravens.
Now teammates, Chase and Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow were on the opposite side of Higgins in the 2019 National Championship Game in which LSU defeated Clemson.
Higgins had 3 receptions for 52 yards and a 36 yard touchdown run on the ground in that game, while Burrow completed 31 of 49 passes for 463 yards and 5 touchdowns and Chase had 9 catches for 221 yards and a pair of scores in a 42-25 LSU win.
The soon to be 24 year old Higgins was the thirty-third overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft and signed a four year contract worth $8,686,785.
Higgins is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent after the 2023 NFL season.