News broke following the Week 11 Thursday Night Football game that Bengals QB and 2021 Comeback Player of The Year, Joe Burrow, might have a crack at the award again in 2024 as he’s been shutdown for the season with a torn ligament.
While it may seem like bad news for the Cardiac Cats, could this lend to a positive next year with a high draft pick?
Joe Burrow is out for the remainder of the season. pic.twitter.com/LycHe9JSSO— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 17, 2023
Bottom Of The AFC North Already
Cincinnati Bengals +10000
The Bengals already had an uphill battle of making the playoffs, dwelling the basement of the AFC North at 5-5, including 0-3 against divisional foes. Now they turn to Jake Browning who went from one attempted NFL pass to 15 after coming in for relief in the 34-20 Week 11 loss to the Ravens.
Cincy surrendered the ninth-most points this season and the eighth-most passing yards per game. They entered the season with the fourth-shortest Super Bowl odds at +1000 could now find themselves with a top-10 draft pick and a marquee cornerback such as Alabama’s Kool-Aid McKinstry.
However, if we want to avoid Burrow being a nominee for comeback player of the year again in the future perhaps a dancing bear on the offensive line could be a draft option. Bengals gave up the 10th-most sacks (27) so far this season so Notre Dame tackle Joe Alt may be available for them to protect their $275-million asset.
What To Do With Cincy Moving Forward?
Could be strong UNDER play down the stretch of the NFL season, despite talking about their suspect defense.
The Bengals were 5-5 on the total this year, not overwhelming, but it’s safe to assume that the offense will struggle under Browning, who completed 57.1 percent of his passes vs Baltimore with an average of 4.9 yards per completion, 68 yards and a touchdown.
If you’re a fantasy player, this could be an opportunity to move Joe Mixon, if anyone is willing to take him. We saw Browning tuck the ball four times for 40 yards in that Week 11 defeat, eating into precious yards from the Oklahoma product.
Of course, the last option is waiting for Super Bowl 58 to conclude and make an early Bengals play next year with a healthy Burrow and some help from the draft.