As the 2021 season gets underway Thursday with the Buccaneers hosting the Cowboys, Cincinnati Bengals fans are looking forward to seeing last year’s No. 1 overall pick, Joe Burrow, take the field for the first time since November.
Burrow looked good as a rookie but an injury late in the season held him out of the final six games. He played just three snaps in the final preseason game, which was his first glimpse of action since the injury took place.
With the Bengals’ season getting underway in a matter of days, Matt Verderame of FanSided ranked every starting quarterback ahead of the Week 1. He had Burrow just outside the top half, putting him squarely at No. 17.
"How healthy is Burrow? He only took three preseason snaps and reports have been flying from Cincinnati stating he looks rusty, which is expected after an ACL surgery. However, he’s surrounded by quality talent in former LSU teammate Ja’Marr Chase, Tyler Boyd and second-year man Tee Higgins. The Bengals should score — and allow — plenty of points."
Verderame definitely gave Burrow a high ranking despite the fact that we haven’t seen him take a regular-season snap since November.
For reference, the players surrounding Burrow on the rankings are Ben Roethlisberger at 16 and Jimmy Garoppolo at 18. Burrow is the worst-ranked quarterback from the division with Big Ben at 16, Baker Mayfield at 14, and Lamar Jackson at 9.
Bengals QB Joe Burrow gets respect from FanSided
After throwing for 5,600 yards and 60 touchdowns as a senior with LSU in 2019, it made perfect sense for the Bengals to take the Tigers quarterback with the first overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. It wasn’t an easy situation for Burrow to walk into, as the Bengals won just two games the year before and weren’t exactly filled to the brim with talent.
Burrow started 10 games and finished the season throwing for 2,688 yards, 13 touchdowns, and five interceptions while dashing for 142 yards and three scores with his legs. Doing that damage through 10 games shows that Burrow can hang with the big boys and fans are looking forward to seeing that this year.
The Vikings secondary is the first challenge on Burrow’s list this year and if he can pick that unit apart and lead the Bengals to victory in Week 1, he could very well find himself in the top half of Verderame’s rankings. He could also be a prime Comeback Player of the Year candidate.