Former LSU football quarterback Joe Burrow gives the Cincinnati Bengals a unique chance to win free agency.
Former LSU football quarterback Joe Burrow is trying to change the Cincinnati Bengals’ culture.
Burrow is a winner. He expects to win every time he steps onto the field. There are no moral victories for Burrow — it’s Super Bowl or bust for former Heisman Trophy winner.
Unfortunately for Burrow, Cincinnati has been accustomed to losing for a long time. The Bengals haven’t won a playoff game since 1991.
Burrow is obviously hoping to change that as quickly as possible. But he won’t be able to do it by himself. There’s a reason Cincinnati was able to select Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. The Bengals simply don’t have the talent right now to compete for a championship.
But that could change with Burrow in town. Cincinnati could become a go-to destination for free agents, but only if the Bengals rise to the occasion.
Talented players want to play with Joe Burrow
Burrow is quickly developing a reputation as a quarterback that NFL players want to be on the field with.
“He’s just one of a kind right now in my eyes,” said Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd this week (via Bengals.com). “That’s my guy. At the end of the day, as I said, I’m not just saying that because he’s on our team, but he shows it each and every week.”
“He never lets the team down or any critics or politics or anything like that. He comes every day to work and he proves himself.”
Reputations are built quickly in the NFL. And it’s clear that Burrow has already developed a reputation as a hard worker, a great teammate, and a player who wants to win.
Basically, any quality free agent should want to play with Burrow. And I imagine that will be the case when free agency starts next spring.
The big question, however, is will the Bengals spend to put the best possible team around Burrow?
Cincinnati currently has the sixth most cap space available in 2021 (according to Spotrac). That could increase with roster decisions after the season.
The Bengals have the money to land top free agents like offensive tackle David Bakhtiari or cornerback Patrick Peterson (or whoever will make the team better).
Cincinnati could become the “hot” destination for players this offseason, which is a phrase that’s likely never been said. And it’s all because of Burrow.
But none of this matters if the Bengals don’t change the way they manage their roster.
Burrow has to change the culture on the field and in the front office. If he’s successful, then the Bengals could be contending for a Super Bowl in the not-so-distant future.