Bengals fans will absolutely hate this wild prediction about Joe Burrow

Say it ain't so, Joe.
Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY

After just four short seasons, Bengals star quarterback Joe Burrow has become a fan favorite in Cincinnati, and understandably so. Burrow led the Bengals to the Super Bowl in just his second season in the league, and then he led the team back to the AFC Championship the following season.

Burrow also posted some serious stats in the process. The LSU product already has over 14,000 passing yards and 97 touchdowns to his name, despite missing some serious time during his first four campaigns due to injury issues.

At just 27 years old, Bengals fans are hoping that Burrow will continue to serve as the team's signal-caller for the next decade, at least. So, it's safe to say that those fans will not be happy about a recent article from Bleacher Report that has Burrow listed as a star player who could retire earlier than expected.

The article points to the consistent punishment that Burrow takes along with his lengthy history with injury issues as potential motivating factors in an early retirement decision. Here's some of what was written:

"The LSU product will turn 28 in December. He's been sacked 148 times in the regular season and another 28 times in the playoffs. The Bengals have taken steps to improve his protection—like signing Orland Brown Jr. in 2023 and drafting Amarius Mims in April—but if the punishment continues to add up, it's easy to think that the signal-caller would consider retiring early. ... After all, Burrow has already earned $76.2 million in his career and has $219 million guaranteed on his current contract.

"Cincinnati has been a perennial contender when Burrow has been healthy, and as long as that doesn't change, he'll probably give little thought to retirement. Yet, team struggles or another significant injury could quickly have him considering his post-playing options."

Burrow has contemplated his 'football mortality'

It's important to point out that this is purely speculation, as Burrow himself hasn't said anything about potentially considering retirement. However, Burrow did openly admit that his injury issues have caused him to ponder his own football mortality, which isn't necessarily a great sign for a player so early on in his career.

"Whenever the injuries start to stack up, your football mortality kind of comes into the back of your mind," Burrow said last month. "So that's definitely something I've thought about and something I have had to fight through."

The hope in Cincinnati moving forward is that Burrow can remain healthy and continue to play at the elite level that he has throughout the first four seasons of his career. Will he be able to do that? Only time will tell, but for now there's no point in speculating about his retirement when he (hopefully) still has a ton of football in front of him.