Former LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is looking forward to an exciting few months ahead. He’s the favorite to go number one in the 2020 NFL draft.
The Cincinnati Bengals own that pick. The organization aims to land its next franchise quarterback and build a team around him.
But things may not go quite according to plan.
Speaking after receiving the 2019 Davey O’Brien Award in Texas, Burrow issued a thinly-veiled threat to the Bengals:
I do have leverage. They have their process, and I have my process. We haven’t even gotten to the (NFL Scouting) Combine yet. There’s a lot of things that happen leading up to the draft and a lot of information gathered.
You can understand why a lot of Bengals fans are up in arms about those comments. The team has a chance to draft a potential superstar coming off the single greatest season a quarterback has ever had in college football.
Many players drafted to the NFL are prospects. Joe Burrow isn’t among them. He’s NFL-ready now, which is precisely what the Cincinnati Bengals need.
But the Bengals aren’t necessarily what Burrow needs.
Steve Bartkowski was drafted first overall in 1975 by the Atlanta Falcons, and he always regretted agreeing to go there. He doesn’t want Joe Burrow to make the same mistake:
I know what it’s like to go to a bottom-feeder team. I’d hate to see that happen to him, to be honest. They beat me up. I spent more time at the hospital recuperating from injuries my first three years than I did throwing touchdowns. It was tough.
The Bengals and owner Mike Brown don’t have the best of reputations – and they’ve never won a Super Bowl. That’s something former player Carson Palmer ripped them for recently , claiming they aren’t committed to winning.
Joe Burrow is currently training with Carson Palmer’s brother, Jordan. Take from that what you will.
The NFL draft is special. It always has been.
It’s a time for fans of bad teams to dream once again about success. Your team may have come last in the AFC North with a 2-14 record, but you’re looking to draft an elite quarterback. Someone that can offer you hope.
If we start seeing top draft picks go the “Eli Manning route” and refuse to join bad teams, then those bad teams will always be just that.
And that isn’t good for the NFL.