Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow is already providing dividends for fans. After a significant run in free agency, the Cincinnati Bengals are showing the soon to be rookie that they are ready and open for business.
The 2020 NFL Draft is a little less than a month away, but the anticipation of the Cincinnati Bengals selecting Joe Burrow looks to have provided a bump to the organization that few might have anticipated. For fans, it was a pleasant surprise in what could result in a groundbreaking kind of offseason.
The names are significant, especially for a team who seemed a whole of bad on defense. Beginning with players like D.J. Reader, Trae Waynes, Mackensie Alexander, Josh Bynes, and Vonn Bell, the Bengals made a worthwhile attempt at shoring up a defense that looked slow and ineffective.
In addition, Cincinnati sent a signal to Burrow that they are listening, by using the franchise tag on A.J. Green and adding offensive guard Xavier Su’a-Filo. If you’re doing the math here, and it’s not hard, the Bengals remade a team that was 2-14 in 2019. That’s significant, as it looks to have reinvigorated a fanbase well before they score the biggest name this offseason, in Burrow himself.
This may be the most significant news in Cincinnati. Burrow has yet to hear his name called, sign a rookie deal, or take a snap in Bengals gear, and already the organization is taking note.
The rookie from LSU could be the single biggest draft pick in the history of the organization. In some ways, the Bengals need Burrow more than Burrow needs the Bengals. That isn’t a criticism. But if you look at how Cincinnati showed a significant uptick to improve and be an actual player in free agency, then the Burrow effect is worth taking note of.
As for where the Bengals go from here, it’s probably not complicated. Having addressed so much on defense, Cincinnati could be on the verge of stockpiling offensive weapons that will show Burrow they are not just all in on being light-years better but are also all in on Joe Burrow. A significant departure from the last time they had a Heisman Trophy winner under center.