Ranking every Bengals first-round pick of the Zac Taylor era
1. Joe Burrow
While it was hard to put Chase in the second spot, how could Joey Franchise not be number one?
The Bengals finished the 2019 season -- Zac Taylor's first season at the helm -- with the worst record in the league and therefore, they had the rights to the number one pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. This meant that they got to select Joe Burrow, who was coming off an incredible season at LSU that ended with him and the Tigers hoisting the championship trophy.
Burrow's rookie season didn't go as planned but a late-season injury didn't help the situation. He came back stronger in 2021, throwing for 4,611 yards, 34 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions and won the Comeback Player of the Year award. He helped lead the Bengals to their first Super Bowl appearance in over three decades but sadly they came up just short.
In his third year at the helm, Burrow tossed for 4,475 yards, 35 touchdowns, and 12 picks and once again had the Bengals on the doorsteps of a Super Bowl appearance. Unfortunately, Cincinnati fell to the Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game but with Burrow at the helm, Bengals fans feel confident that this team will always be a Super Bowl contender.
Zac Taylor's coaching tenure was not looking good until Burrow was fully healthy paired with his favorite weapon from college. That's why Burrow was the best pick of the Taylor era. He changed the entire narrative of the Cincinnati Bengals franchise.