Joe Burrow

Joe Burrow Addresses Bengals Interest

Off the radar to be the 2020 No. 1 overall pick at this time last year, Joe Burrow is now widely expected to be Cincinnati-bound when Roger Goodell announces this year’s first selection. Rumors of the LSU superstar being less than thrilled about that destination have circulated.

The reigning Heisman winner addressed a potential Bengals fit and stopped short of saying he would be happy to land with the Bengals.

They have their process that they have to go through, so I’m just blessed to be in the position that I’m in. If they select me, they select me,” Burrow said, via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s Drew Davison. “I’m going to do everything in my power to be the best football player that I can be.”

When asked a follow-up question on whether he would be satisfied if the Bengals select him, Burrow did not respond in that fashion, Davison adds. This follows a comment Burrow made earlier this month that helped start the rumors that he may not be ecstatic about going to Cincinnati.

“You want to go No. 1. But you also want to go to a great organization that is committed to winning. Committed to winning Super Bowls,” Burrow said.

Burrow has been training for the draft with ex-Bengal backup Jordan Palmer, the younger brother of Carson Palmer. The latter has not made his feelings about the Bengals’ desire to win hidden. The Bengals have not won a playoff game since a 1990 wild-card win over the Oilers, and Carson Palmer’s frustration with the franchise prompted a trade demand in 2011. While the Bengals recovered quickly without Palmer, their Andy Dalton years produced five straight opening-round playoff losses. Last season, the Bengals started numerous veterans but still finished 2-14. Though, they did lose some key players to injury.

The Dolphins have been linked to Burrow, and while they have the draft capital to move up from No. 5 to No. 1, the Bengals are not believed to be interested in moving down (barring a Ricky Williams-type offer). They are zeroing in on making the Ohio native-turned-national champion their next quarterback.

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AFC Notes: Burrow, Harris, Texans, Raiders

Holding the No. 1 overall pick for the first time since they drafted Carson Palmer 17 years ago, the Bengals have been widely linked to Ohio native Joe Burrow with this selection. While Cincinnati is considering Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert and Chase Young at No. 1, the prospect of a Burrow-Bengals partnership not happening would surprise many in the NFL. It has become “quite clear” in the minds of several execs the Bengals will draft Burrow, Matt Miller of Bleacher Report notes. Unless a team comes in with a Ricky Williams-type trade, as one coach relayed to Miller, the Bengals are not expected to get cute with their pick. (The Saints traded their entire 1999 draft, plus first- and third-round picks in 2000 to the Redskins for Williams. The Bengals receiving any offer on this level would be shocking.) With the Bengals set to work with Andy Dalton on a trade, signs continue to point Burrow heading back to Ohio.

Here is the latest from the AFC:

  • The Broncos have a decision to make on Chris Harris. The four-time Pro Bowler will hit free agency for the first time, and a defection would give the Broncos their biggest cornerback need since before they traded for Champ Bailey 16 years ago. Nevertheless, the prospect of Harris seeing a better offer in free agency leads 9News’ Mike Klis to predict the 30-year-old defender will depart after nine seasons in Denver. The Broncos wanted to keep Harris, offering him a $12MM-AAV deal before last year’s trade deadline. However, Klis notes that deal only included one guaranteed season. Harris has long said he wants to retire in Denver but wanted to test free agency after signing a team-friendly extension back in 2014.
  • Despite the Texans releasing Vernon Hargreaves before the vesting of his fifth-year option, it is not out of the question they bring him back, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle notes. The former Buccaneers first-round pick was set to make $9.59MM in 2020, and the Texans will consider re-signing him at a lower price. That will, however, depend on how Houston fares in free agency and the draft, per Wilson. So this process may take a while. Hargreaves, whom the Texans claimed off waivers late last season, would understandably explore his options elsewhere in the meantime.
  • Linked to Tom Brady, the Raiders also have a major need at wide receiver. This deficiency led Sheil Kapadia of The Athletic to predict the Vikings will send Stefon Diggs to Las Vegas (subscription required). The Raiders guaranteed Tyrell Williams‘ salary but remain on the lookout for receiving help, which will likely be required to entice Brady to leave New England (a scenario Kapadia also includes as one of his bold predictions). Diggs is signed through the 2023 season, and his $14.5MM cap hit will be much tougher for the Vikings to absorb than the Raiders. Still, Minnesota’s top-heavy setup at wide receiver will not make Diggs cheap. At 26, he is three years younger than Adam Thielen, thus raising the price of a prospective trade.

AFC North Notes: Burrow, Stefanski, Ravens

The Bengals are widely expected to take LSU QB Joe Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft, but there may be a bit of intrigue in that regard, per Albert Breer of SI.com. Burrow will work with former Bengal Jordan Palmer, the little brother of franchise icon Carson Palmer, for his pre-draft training. And the elder Palmer recently had some critical comments for Cincinnati, saying that the club was never really dedicated to chasing a Super Bowl.

Burrow subsequently said the following: “[y]ou want to go No. 1. But you also want to go to a great organization that is committed to winning. Committed to winning Super Bowls.” That may just be a coincidence, and Burrow’s father recently downplayed any notion that Burrow doesn’t want to be picked by the Bengals (Twitter link via Jeremy Rauch of FOX 19), but Breer believes Bengals Director of Player Personnel Duke Tobin may need to sell Burrow on the team just a bit.

Now for more from the AFC North:

  • As expected, the Bengals have promoted Dan Pitcher to quarterbacks coach after Alex Van Pelt left for Cleveland’s OC job, the team announced. Pitcher will have a significant role in Burrow’s development, assuming Cincy selects the LSU signal-caller.
  • We passed along some remarks from new Browns GM Andrew Berry earlier today, and new Cleveland HC Kevin Stefanski also took to the podium. Scott Patsko of Cleveland.com passes along the entire transcript, which is worth a read for Browns fans, but much of it was fairly non-committal coach-speak, which Stefanski has already mastered. Stefanski, though, made it a point to note that he will be heavily involved in making personnel decisions with Berry, and he said he does not know who will be calling offensive plays this year.
  • Though the Ravens have more cap flexibility this year than in past seasons, Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic does not expect a spending spree. He predicts perhaps one big-ticket item and a few modest signings, and much will depend on what the club decides to do with pass rusher Matt Judon — a situation that is still fluid — and whether RG Marshal Yanda retires. He also names OL James Hurst as a potential release candidate.
  • Steelers president Art Rooney II indicated his club may target a RB and/or WR in free agency, per Teresa Varley of Steelers.com, though Rooney said Pittsburgh is content with the quarterback situation as it is. Behind Ben Roethlisberger, the club will roll with some combination of Mason Rudolph, Duck Hodges, and Paxton Lynch.

Prospect Profile: Joe Burrow

The Bengals have roughly three months to figure out who they’ll take with the No. 1 overall pick, but many are convinced that their selection has already been made. Quarterback Joe Burrow, who is coming off of a ridiculous season at LSU, may be a lock for Cincinnati.

[RELATED: Bengals To Consider Tua, Herbert, Young]

Today, Burrow stands as the consensus top QB in this year’s class. But, in the summer, that wasn’t exactly the case. Scouts long drooled over the potential of Tua TagovailoaJustin Herbert, and Jake Fromm while Burrow seemed to be on the tier below. But, thanks to Tagovailoa’s hip injury and Burrow’s meteoric rise, the landscape shifted drastically.

The former Ohio State backup debuted as LSU’s starter in 2018 but threw for only 2,894 yards and 16 touchdown passes as a junior. Then, in 2019, Tigers passing-game coordinator (and new Panthers OC) Joe Brady helped him rise to a whole ‘nother level. Burrow threw for 5,671 yards, 60 touchdowns (!), and lobbed just six interceptions en route to a National Championship and the Heisman trophy.

The numbers have generated headlines, but execs are equally impressed by Burrow’s intangibles.

Burrow just has it. You can’t coach it; you can’t develop it. Some guys just have it,” one longtime QB coach told Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller in November. “Baker Mayfield has it. Gardner Minshew has it. The difference is that Burrow has better size than both and a much better arm than Minshew.”

There are few knocks on Burrow, but no prospect is perfect. Among the (minor) concerns – Burrow’s limited track record of excellence. A highly-touted prospect out of high school, Burrow found himself mostly buried behind J.T. Barrett and Dwayne Haskins at Ohio State. It wasn’t until 2018 that he got his first crack at starting with LSU, and his numbers didn’t exactly jump off of the page. Then, in 2019, he was unstoppable. Someone playing devil’s advocate with Burrow would probably start here – Burrow’s game tape is excellent, but most of it comes from one season of work.

There’s also the matter of Burrow’s arm strength – he can’t air it out like Herbert and he doesn’t have a Kyle Boller fastball in his arsenal. Still, execs everywhere say that Burrow has the overall makeup to offset those limitations.

The Bengals will do their due diligence on every top prospect in this year’s crop, and they may even listen on trade inquiries, but all signs are pointing to Burrow as the top pick in April.

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Latest On Top QB Prospects

A long list of teams have question marks at the quarterback position heading into the offseason. Well, one executive believes many of the organizations will solve their predicament via the draft. Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller talked to a personnel executive who believes five quarterbacks will be selected in the top-15 of this year’s draft.

This might not sound all that shocking; among the teams with top-15 picks, only five of those organizations have used first-round capital at the position in the past two drafts. You could easily talk yourself into one of the other 10 teams selecting a quarterback, and a team outside the top-15 could easily trade up. However, it is notable that the executive was willing to speak so definitively.

As Miller explains, there’s a pretty clear pecking order atop the quarterback draft board: Joe Burrow (LSU), Tua Tagovailoa (Alabama), some combo of Jordan Love (Utah State) and Justin Herbert (Oregon), Jacob Eason (Washington), and Jake Fromm (Georgia). Miller notes that the Chargers, who are selecting sixth-overall, are particularly interested in Love.

Miller himself believes six quarterbacks will be selected in the top-50, and he notes that part of the urgency to select a signal-caller could be attributed to the falloff after the top-six options. The next-best prospect, Oklahoma’s Jalen Hurts, struggled during Senior Bowl practice this week, and Hawaii’s Cole McDonald projects as more of a fifth- or sixth-rounder.

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Bengals To Consider Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert, Chase Young

While favored to take Ohio native Joe Burrow at No. 1 overall, the Bengals are considering three other players for the top pick. The LSU standout is, of course, among this group. But the team is also studying Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert and Chase Young for the pick, Albert Breer of SI.com reports.

The Bengals have stepped back from a report indicating they will not trade the No. 1 pick, but Breer notes the team is not expected to move down. Bengals brass praised the Heisman winner recently, and while it would be a borderline shock if they did not draft Burrow, the team plans to conduct on-campus visits and bring in each player for pre-draft workouts. Burrow, however, is still believed to be the frontrunner, per Breer.

Young is regarded by some as the best pass-rushing prospect available in years, and both Tagovailoa and Herbert entered the 2019 season with much higher profiles than Burrow. Young remains a strong bet to go to the Redskins at No. 2, and if the Bengals do draft Burrow, there could be some jockeying for position at the Nos. 3-4 slots (held by the Lions and Giants) for Tagovailoa and Herbert.

After throwing 16 touchdown passes in 13 games as a junior, Burrow tossed a record-setting 60 in the Tigers’ national championship season. Zac Taylor asked Burrow’s father, Jimmy — who, like Taylor, played at Nebraska — to see if Joe would go to the Senior Bowl, Breer adds. But Joe Burrow declined to attend the Mobile, Ala., showcase.

It is interesting as well to see a pecking order emerge before the Combine, though the Bengals’ top need is not exactly a secret. As such, Young may be trailing the three passers.

We know what Joe is on tape; we know what Tua is on tape; we know what Justin is on tape,” Bengals player personnel director Duke Tobin said, via Breer. “Our role right now is to try to find out what we don’t know — how his leadership works, how his football mind works, how quickly he adapts to different situations, what his overall personality is, what it’s like being around him on a regular Tuesday. How much passion do they have for the game? … We’re trying to get at those types of things, with every player we do, but particularly the quarterbacks.

“… I feel like I’ve got a long way to go, because I’m just now starting the process of asking people close to them what they think of them.”

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Dolphins Considering Joe Burrow Trade-Up?

Considering how their season started, the Dolphins surprised most by winning five games. As a result, the first of their three first-round picks comes in at No. 5. But the team long expected to draft a quarterback high this year is intrigued by the top prospect available.

The Dolphins covet Joe Burrow, per Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio, who adds owner Stephen Ross is driving the bandwagon for the player expected to go No. 1 overall. This obviously may be academic, with the Bengals also needing a quarterback and fans of the LSU record-setter as well. The Bengals have backtracked on a report they will not trade the top pick, however.

It would take a massive trade haul for the Dolphins to move up to No. 1, but they do have the necessary draft capital to make such a move. The Dolphins also hold the Nos. 18 and 26 picks. However, it is quite possible Tua Tagovailoa — long linked to the Dolphins — will be available at No. 5. The Alabama quarterback has hovered as a top prospect for far longer than Burrow, and the Dolphins may embrace adding him for no extra cost rather than using their draft war chest for a Burrow move.

Miami started 0-7 but rallied to win five of its final nine games, moving the team into a less certain spot to land a quarterback. As it stands now, the rebuilding team may need to pay close attention to the respective draft stocks of Tagovailoa and Justin Herbert. Other interested teams will surely consider moving into the Nos. 2-4 spots — occupied currently by the Redskins, Lions and Giants — to trade in front of a franchise known to be fixated on passers.

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Bengals Will Not Trade No. 1 Overall Pick

The Bengals are armed with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 draft, and as it turns out, it was a good year to be the worst team in the league. Cincinnati can select Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow with the top selection, and the club is not hiding its affinity for the LSU signal-caller.

And the Bengals’ public comments about Burrow are not a ploy to heighten the trade value of the No. 1 pick. Per Adam Schefter of ESPN.com, Cincinnati has no intention of trading away the selection, regardless of how tempting an offer might be.

Schefter says there has been mounting speculation that the Panthers, whose QB situation is also uncertain, may be gearing up to trade for the top pick. That speculation has grown since Carolina recently named LSU passing game coordinator, Joe Brady, as its new OC. And the Dolphins, another QB-needy club, have three first-round picks in the 2020 draft, so they have the capital to move up if they want.

But the Bengals are not interested, as they are locked in on Burrow. The Ohio native just completed one of the finest seasons in college football history, leading his Tigers to a national championship while completing 76.3% of his passes for an incredible 60 touchdowns against just six interceptions.

Burrow will not participate in the Senior Bowl, but even if he does not do anything until the draft, his spot as the No. 1 overall pick seems secure.

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Joe Burrow Declines Senior Bowl Invite

With Joe Burrow becoming one of college football’s all-time rising stocks, NFL evaluators will not see the LSU star in pads again before the draft. Burrow will pass on the Senior Bowl, according to the game’s director, Jim Nagy (on Twitter).

Burrow’s record-setting 60-touchdown pass season rocketed him from later-round NFL prospect to near-surefire No. 1 overall pick. The Bengals have praised the Ohio native’s abilities and are likely to bring him aboard as their next quarterback.

The former Ohio State talent debuted as LSU’s starter in 2018 but threw for only 2,894 yards and 16 touchdown passes as a junior. Working with new Panthers offensive coordinator Joe Brady this past season, Burrow got to 5,671 yards and more than tripled his TD output. It seems unlikely his stock will climb higher by working out in Mobile next week.

The next opportunity teams will have to see Burrow in action will be at the Combine. However, his absence in Mobile, Ala., will open the door to Justin Herbert commanding the spotlight at college football’s top all-star game. The Oregon product bypassed the draft last year to play his senior season and will suit up at the Senior Bowl. So will Utah State’s Jordan Love. Michigan’s Shea Patterson, Oklahoma’s Jalen Hurts, Washington State’s Anthony Gordon and Colorado’s Steven Montez will join them.

With Tua Tagovailoa out, Herbert has a chance to potentially snare the position of second quarterback drafted. While the Dolphins have been linked to Tagovailoa at No. 5, they also did extensive work on Herbert when he was a possible top-10 pick in the 2019 draft. The Redskins, Lions and Giants (Nos. 2-4) are almost certain to be out of the quarterback market and could double as trade-down candidates for teams looking to invest in either Herbert or Tagovailoa.

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Latest On Joe Burrow, Bengals

We’re months away from the NFL Draft, but there’s little doubt about who the Bengals will select with the No. 1 overall pick. All signs are pointing to quarterback Joe Burrow and the Bengals aren’t hiding their affinity for the LSU star. 

He’s got natural pocket feel. He feels it,” Bengals offensive coordinator Brian Callahan said. “It seems like he never takes his eyes off down the field. He extends the play really, really well. He’s a lot faster than you might assume when you see him running away from all those SEC guys. He’s got incredible up-field accuracy. The ball hardly ever hits the ground in a game, which is rare. He just naturally puts the ball in places where those guys can make plays.”

And, despite the Bengals’ struggles in recent years, Burrow’s father says the QB would be honored and delighted to be their signal caller.

He’s excited to even be in that conversation and if the Bengals do draft him, he’s going to be happy,” Jimmy Burrow told TSN 690 (via Ben Baby of ESPN.com). “He’ll look at it as a challenge, but he’ll be confident that eventually, they can win a lot of games there in Cincinnati.”

Burrow put himself on the national recruiting radar at Ohio’s Athens High School, where he led the program to three straight playoff appearances. After that, he attended Ohio State and spent the next two years as a backup to J. T. Barrett. Then, when he was told that Dwayne Haskins would be the team’s new starting quarterback, he transferred to LSU and won the top job.

After a strong 2018 season, Burrow shattered all expectations with a 76.3% completion rate, 5,671 passing yards, and 60 (yes, 60) touchdowns through the air. He also added another five rushing TDs for good measure.

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