We’re still a couple of months away from the NFL Draft. The next tentpole on the offseason horizon is the NFL Scouting Combine later this month, then we have free agency before we get to that. But there will be few players more talked about between now and then than LSU quarterback Joe Burrow.
It’s been widely assumed pretty much since the end of the regular season that Burrow is going to be the next starting quarterback for the Cincinnati Bengals, who both have the first pick in the draft and also clearly need a quarterback (which is typically the case when you have the first pick).
One of the Bengals’ past top picks, at the same position, has something of a warning for Burrow. Appearing on the Dan Patrick Show last week, he commented on Burrow among a number of other things. “Going to Cincy, I’ve been there, I know how it feels”, he said.
“The one thing that Duke Tobin’s done a great job since he’s been leading the charge as far as the draft process goes is, there’s been some talent there”, he said. “Whether the organization buys in and is fully going after a Super Bowl and is really trying to win a Super Bowl is the other question. Talentwise, they’ve had some good players. I was fortunate to have played with a lot of really good players”.
Patrick was saying that the Bengals are a team without much talent, though I don’t agree. They have some very talented players on both sides of the ball, from A.J. Green and Joe Mixon on offense to Geno Atkins and William Jackson III on defense. Getting better at the quarterback position can change the perception quite a bit of the overall talent, though there are obvious deficiencies.
And that is, yes, on the ownership and Mike Brown. Routinely, Cincinnati is among the league’s teams with the most salary cap space. They are often near the salary cap floor, meaning they spend as little as they are required to, in order to bolster their roster. They rarely make meaningful outside free agent signings despite almost always having the money (read: cap space) to be major players.
That’s why I wanted out: I never felt like the organization was really trying to win a Super Bowl, and really chasing the Super Bowl”, Palmer also said. “Because that’s what today’s day and age is. The game today is you can’t just hope you draft well and not go after free agents and you just end up in the Super Bowl. You gotta go get it”.
The Bengals have been one of the worst teams in the league over the course of the past several decades with maybe the longest playoff victory drought in the NFL. It would be understandable for somebody to be hesitant to want to go there, honestly.