Quarterback Joe Burrow hosted the Bengals offensive coaching staff for the Browns win over the Steelers on Sunday and announced support for head coach Zac Taylor.
Having a general manager, coach and quarterback on the same page is the troika for a successful NFL franchise. For the Bengals, having at least QB Joe Burrow and head coach Zac Taylor united is critical for the future. Burrow hosted the Cincinnati offensive coaches on Sunday to watch the Browns defeat the Steelers.
Cincinnati has a bright future on offense. The challenge for the Bengals is competing in a division in which they were the only team that did not qualify for the playoffs in 2020. The Baltimore Ravens and Browns will continue their playoff runs this weekend. Three former QBs on the Bengals staff help Burrow’s development.
Taylor, offensive coordinator Brian Callahan and quarterbacks coach Dan Pitcher were the staff members who were hosted by Burrow to watch former Bengals QB coach and NFL QB Alex Van Pelt call the offensive plays for the Browns with Cleveland head coach Kevin Stefanski out because of Covid.
Pitcher spoke about what he, Burrow, Callahan and Taylor analyzed watching the game and how Burrow is feeling seven weeks after tearing his ACL. Pitcher just finished his first season as the Cincinnati QB coach after being an offensive assistant from 2016-18 and the assistant QB coach in 2019.
"“It was mostly just watching the game, but any time you’ve got coaches and players you know you’re going to talk a some Xs and Os…It was good catching up with Joe after not seeing him for something like seven weeks. I really think he’s in a good place.”"
Burrow praised Taylor during a Tuesday press conference. Burrow stated he thinks that Taylor will be a good coach but that the Bengals did not win as many games as expected this season. Cincinnati did rally after Burrow was hurt and won two games. Ryan Finley led the Bengals to a win over Pittsburgh.
Brandon Allen made the Bengals offense more multi-dimensional in leading Cincinnati to a victory over the Houston Texans in December. Injuries to players other than Burrow also hindered the Bengals. The most prominent of those was running back Joe Mixon who played in only six games. Burrow endorsed Taylor.
"“I was excited about it. I think Zac’s going to be a really, really good coach…Obviously we didn’t win as many games as we expected this year. We had a lot of key injuries that kind of prevented us from doing that, but with one more offseason I think next year’s going to be a lot of fun and we’ll take a big step.”"
This will be a critical offseason for Cincinnati. The Bengals need to make the right decisions in free agency and get help for Burrow on offense and on the defensive line. Development and progression in year three under Taylor will be critical for him to keep his job. In two seasons as a head coach, Taylor is 6-25-1.
The development of Burrow and Taylor together could determine the future course of the Bengals. If Taylor doesn’t have the Bengals on the right path in 2021, he will likely be replaced and Burrow will already be on his second coach in his third season. The right match at coach with Burrow is critical for the Bengals future.