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NFL Legacies: Jessie Bates III

We recall many big names over the years in the NFL, but Bates is a fairly new one. Bates has only entered the league in the last decade, and has only been pro since 2018, but he has already made a mark on the sport. 

He was born in February 1997, and now he is known for playing for the Cincinnati Bengals. He did play football in College, but in 2018 he was drafted by the Bengals in the 2nd round of the draft. 

But, who is he? 

The Bengals have been looking at a renewed deal for Bates for 2022, and the odds have looked good for him. But, will we be seeing him again? Of course! 

However, rather than discuss what we anticipate for Bates, what do we know about the past of Bates’ career? 

Bates’ play has not massively influenced the NFL spreads, but we do anticipate that he will end up influencing future spreads in the years to come. 

Who Is Jessie Bates III?

Jessie Bates was the 54th pick in the second round of the draft in 2018. He is a nimble and humble safety for the Bengals and has been for 4 years. With only 4 years in the professional league, he is still a bit of a newbie to the scene. 

Of course, he doesn’t get oodles of attention, not like high performing quarterbacks do. But Bates himself would compare himself to a few fellow NFL players, including Mathieu due to his epic ball-hawking skills. 

He also sees himself as being similar to Micah Hyde, as while he is not the most talented player, he is well-prepared, and he has success because of his preparedness. 

Who Bates’ compares himself to says a lot about who he is as a player, but there is more to him than just that. 

Bates’ Professional Career

In 2017 Bates was a sophomore, and was playing for his college, he only missed 2 out of 13 games due to injury. He made 8 punts for 161 yards and a touchdown as well as a forced fumble, 5 pass deflections and a fantastic 79 tackles. 

After his college season, he declared for the NFL draft. 

He attended the NFL Scouting Combine and completed the drills, however, he skipped the bench press. 

He performed 3 for safeties in the 60-yard shuttle, 4th in the 3-cone drill, and 5th in short shuttle. 

The Bengals swept him up and signed him to a 4 year $4.94 million contact. So, now we are looking to see if he will stay with the team. 

His 2018 Play

He was slated as a backup safety, and he eventually earned the opportunity to compete for the starting free-safety role against Iloka after he impressed the coaches. 

The head coach Lewis named Bates their starting free safety to start off their regular season alongside Shawn Williams. 

He made his debut and his first start recorded a whopping 8 solo tackles, the breaking up of a pass, and he made his first interception when they won a 34 to 23 victory against the Ravens in his second week. 

He made his first interception during a pass attempt that was made from Flacco, originally aimed at Crabtree. 

Eventually, by week 7, Bates had collected 12 combined tackles (a season high)  during their loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. 

Bates also made six solo tackles, returned an interception and made two pass deflections in October 2018 in their victorious game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. 

Of course, this was before Brady’s Buccaneers, so Bates faced off Winston – the quarterback of the Buccaneers back then, and intercepted a pass from him. 

His 2019 Play

2018 was his rookie year, and in 2019 he was getting the hang of it. In his 4th week against the Steelers he recovered a fumble which was forced by Vigil, a teammate, as they lost 27-3. 

In their 10th week of the season, they played against the Ravens, and Bates recorded his first interception of this year against Robert Griffin III in their game lost 49-13. 

They faced the Oakland Raiders, and Bates gained an interception off of Carr in their 17-10 loss. 

Things were not going great for the Bengals, but Bates was doing great collecting interceptions like there is no tomorrow. 

He hit the same number of interceptions in 2019 as he did in his rookie year, so at least the Bengals, and everyone else knew he was consistent in his performance. 

2020 And Beyond

In 2020, he was still performing well. In his 6th week of his 3rd year he recorded his first interception off of a Rivers’ thrown pass, as they had a 31 to27 loss. In the 11th week he recorded a third interception off of a pass from Smith of the Washington Football Team. 

After this season, Bates gained the title of the second-team All-Pro. 

Bates made his second career playoff interception against Matthew Stafford in the end zone in the Super Bowl. An event we all well remember, and we are sure both players will go down in history for.

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Priyanka Chaudhary
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