While defense might win championships, every NFL team wants an elite quarterback under center. When you’re capable of scoring points at will, no game is out of reach; just ask Kansas City Chiefs fans after their comeback win over the Houston Texans. It’s a bit late to land someone like Patrick Mahomes, but the Cincinnati Bengals will be hoping that LSU’s Joe Burrow could revitalize them in a similar manner.
While the NFL draft is still a few months away, the Bengals aren’t letting that slow things down. Some members of the organization’s coaching staff are already praising Burrow’s ability.
The Cincinnati Bengals miserable 2019 campaign
When you end up with the first-overall pick in the upcoming draft, it’s safe to say you had a bad season. The Cincinnati Bengals experienced that reality first hand.
While the AFC North can be a tough division at the best of times, the Bengals truly struggled in 2019. The team limped out of the gate, dropping their first eight games; after the bye week, things only marginally improved. Cincinnati managed to beat the New York Jets in Week 13 and the Cleveland Browns in Week 17, finishing the year 2-14.
As their record would lead you to believe, the Bengals floundered on both sides of the ball. Andy Dalton struggled through most of the season, even losing his job to Ryan Finley at one point, while A.J. Green missed the entire campaign due to injury. Defensively, the club allowed almost 400 yards per game.
The Cincinnati Bengals are already high on Joe Burrow
That dismal season earned the Cincinnati Bengals the top pick in the 2020 NFL draft. While they could select anyone they want, the coaching staff certainly seems excited about LSU quarterback Joe Burrow.
Quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt called Burrow “a very intriguing guy,” but the praise didn’t stop there. Bengals’ offensive coordinator Brian Callahan went on to spell out his impressions of the young signal-caller.
“He’s got natural pocket feel. He feels it,” Callahan told the Bengals’ official website. “It seems like he never takes his eyes off down the field. He extends the play really, really well. He’s a lot faster than you might assume when you see him running away from all those SEC guys. He’s got incredible up-field accuracy. The ball hardly ever hits the ground in a game, which is rare. He just naturally puts the ball in places where those guys can make plays.”
Joe Burrow has to be the first-overall pick, right?
While it’s hard to be completely confident in January, it does seem like Joe Burrow will be heading to Cincinnati. It’s simply too good of an opportunity for the franchise to pass up.
Burrow posted eye-popping numbers at LSU, and the Bengals need a new quarterback. Ryan Finley didn’t steal the show during his cameo, and Andy Dalton is getting up there in age; even if he stays on the books for the final year of his contract, he’s not a long-term solution at this point.
The Bengals coaching staff is also confident that Burrow could seamlessly transition into their offense. “We’ve got a lot of similarities with [LSU’s] pass game. A lot of NFL offenses do,” Callahan said. “He ran a lot of elements of what they did in New Orleans. Getting guys in space. Getting people in matchups. You see a lot of pro passing concepts in their offense and they did a really good job. But they are things that you see around the league. It’s all things that fit very well with what we do and a lot of people do.”
A great deal can still change, but the Cincinnati Bengals staff sounds like they’re sold on Joe Burrow.