Joe Burrow sack number projections still alarmingly high in 2022

Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The Cincinnati Bengals made sure to beef up their offensive line this year so that they could project Joe Burrow. One analyst doesn’t seem too confident in the unit protecting Joey Franchise. 

Mike Clay of ESPN released his projections for the 2022 season and these are always fun to look at. One thing about the Cincinnati Bengals‘ projections that really stood out to me, however, was on Joe Burrow‘s section.

After the Bengals revamped the offensive line, one would think that the quarterback’s sack numbers would decline significantly from a season ago. He was sacked a whopping 51 times in the 2021 season and Clay has him getting sacked 47 times in 2022.

Four fewer sacks than a season ago after the team spent a lot of money building up the offensive line would be a massive disappointment. Ted Karras, Alex Cappa, and La’el Collins were brought in to change the narrative surrounding the o-line and in Clay’s projection, that doesn’t look to be what will happen.

New o-line not enough to protect Joe Burrow?

There were several sacks last year that weren’t necessarily the o-line’s fault but happened because Burrow held onto the ball too long trying to make something happen. Maybe the offensive line’s actual sacks allowed decrease this year but Burrow is still guilty of trying to make something out of nothing.

After this organization went out and signed three key names in free agency to join forces with Jonah Williams and (likely) Jackson Carman, it’d be a huge blow for Burrow to still hit the dirt 47 times in the 2022 season. This can’t happen if the team wants to be a Super Bowl contender again. Burrow has to stay healthy if the team wants to go places.

Now this is just a projection but it’s not crazy to think that the offensive line doesn’t gel and things go south. It’s an entirely new unit up front protecting Joey Franchise and it’s going to take time for them to get used to working together. Most figure that once they do, however, the unit is going to be much better than it was a season ago.

Hopefully, Clay’s projections are far off.