CINCINNATI -- Is AJ McCarron a restricted or unrestricted free agent after this season?
An arbitrator could decide that question for the Cincinnati Bengals quarterback, ESPN reports.
Citing unnamed sources, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Saturday that McCarron filed a grievance against the team.
That comes just days after a last-minute, fumbled trade deal with the Cleveland Browns.
At stake in his grievance, Schefter reports: whether the Browns can sign him without compensating the Bengals or whether Cleveland would have to trade for his rights.
McCarron argues he should have come off the non-football injury list during training camp of his rookie season, according to Schefter's unnamed sources. That would have given him another accrued year toward free agency. Instead, the Bengals didn't put him on the active roster on Dec. 9, which didn't give him the six regular-season games needed to count the season.
The arbitrator could make a ruling this winter, Schefter reported.