Type of receiver Bengals should target for Joe Burrow

Jacksonville Jaguars At Cincinnati Bengals Oct 4
Jacksonville Jaguars At Cincinnati Bengals Oct 4 /

During his final season at LSU leading the Tigers to the National Championship, Bengals franchise quarterback Joe Burrow was the best in college football throwing the deep ball. Cincinnati was the worst team in the NFL completing passes of 20 yards or beyond in 2020. Drafting a deep threat in 2021 is a likely Bengals priority.

Cincinnati has several options at wide receiver to add a deep threat in the passing game to add to returnees, Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins. Boyd averaged 10.6 yards per receptions on 79 receptions for 841 yards and four touchdowns in 2020. Higgins averaged 13.6 YPC on 79 receptions for  841 yards and six TDs.

If Burrow is back healthy and Cinncinnati can add a receiver that complements Boyd and Higgins in the passing game has a chance to make a huge jump in 2021. The Bengals did a great job evaluating and then drafting Higgins in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft after taking Burrow first overall.

In their preview of what the Bengals could do in free agency and the NFL Draft in 2021, Pro Football Focus examined the type of receiver the Bengals should be looking for to complement Boyd and Higgins. Cincinnati needs a steep incline to have a more viable deep passing game in 2021.

"What kind of receiver should Cincinnati be looking to target to complement Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins?Outside of the offensive line performance, one of the biggest glaring weaknesses for the Bengals offense in 2020 was the lack of any kind of deep passing attack. Bengals quarterbacks combined to complete a league-low 15 passes targeted 20 or more yards downfield during the regular season on 73 attempts.That 20.5% completion rate was nearly eight percentage points lower than any other offense in the league.  Arm strength isn’t Joe Burrow’s greatest weapon, but he did have considerable success going downfield in his final season at LSU.In fact, Burrow won the “best deep ball” superlative in the 2020 PFF Draft Guide following a year in which he completed 57% of his passes 20 or more yards downfield — 26 of which went for touchdowns.One obvious way to try to improve Burrow’s downfield success in 2021 is to add wide receivers who can consistently create separation deep.Ideally, the wide receiver Cincinnati brings in this offseason would be either a Ja’Marr Chase-type who can win at all levels, or the sort of deep threat the Bengals hoped John Ross would become with his speed."

Chase would be a huge addition to the Cincinnati offense. In 2019, Chase led college football with the most receptions over 10, 20, 30 and 50 yards. Burrow and Chase have proven what an elite tandem they can be. Bengals head coach Zac Taylor helped lead an elite offense as the Rams QB coach in 2018.

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The Bengals have young talent in place that needs a few other components to become one of the most explosives offenses in the NFL. Having Burrow at QB provides Cincinnati with the foundation to build around for the future. Adding an explosive WR during the 2021 offseason can take the Bengals’ offense to another level.