Cris Collinsworth's much-heralded "future" contract with the USFL's Tampa Bay Bandits has evaporated and his agent says he is optimistic about working out a deal to send the star wide receiver back to the NFL's Cincinnati Bengals.
Of course, Collinsworth never really left the Bengals before the Bandits announced yesterday, "We were unable to meet contract demands because Cris has been declared uninsurable by Lloyds (of London) because of an ankle injury sustained during the NFL season."
Collinsworth had been expected to sign a five-year, $3 million contract with Tampa Bay, but the Bandits indicate relief over the demise of the deal agreed to in September 1983, effective with the end of the three-time Pro Bowl player's Bengals contract.
"The (USFL) contract has been terminated," Collinsworth's agent, Washingtonian Richard Bennett, said. "They (the Bandits) really had no decision to make. They were required to provide that insurance." He added that he and Collinsworth probably will visit Cincinnati this week to reopen negotiations.
The Bengals, who had been trying to reacquire Collinsworth, recently offered a reported a seven-year, multimillion-dollar contract, but Bennett turned down the deal because of its length. "I don't think any football player is wise to sign a contract for seven years," Bennett said . . .
Anyway, Collinsworth may go on catching passes from Ken Anderson. The 14-year Bengal quarterback yesterday ended retirement speculation, saying he will report for duty this summer. He's no lock to start.
Coach Sam Wyche said he has Anderson penciled in as his starter, because that is the way he finished the 1984 season. "But you can't project how players are going to come in. Boomer (Esiason) was in today, and he's working out hard, and I know Turk (Schonert) is working out hard."
"I don't have it out of my system yet," oft-injured Anderson, 36, said of his career. "I think I can still play."