LSU quarterback Joe Burrow won the National Championship and is undoubtedly heading to Cincinnati in April. Here’s why he could be a nightmare for the Steelers.
Things seem to be going from bad to worse for the Steelers as of late. After losing three straight games to close out the 2019 season, Pittsburgh fell just short of the playoffs. In their place, the Tenessee Titans are set to play in the AFC Championship game this weekend.
But aside from thinking about ‘what could have been’ for the Steelers had, they made the playoffs, Pittsburgh has an entirely new beast to worry about that could haunt them well into the future: Joe Burrow.
In 2018, the LSU quarterback was an afterthought – completing just 57.8 percent of his balls for 2,894 yards with 16 touchdowns and 5 picks in 13 games. However, the young quarterback shocked the nation this past season with perhaps the best quarterback performance we have ever seen.
Burrow trampled all expectations. In 15 games, he threw for an astonishing 5,671 yards and 60 touchdowns to go with just 6 interceptions.
So why should the Steelers be concerned?
After a miraculous season that was capped off with a win in the National Championship Game, we can go ahead and pencil in Burrow to the Cincinnati Bengals with the first overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Cincinnati has dealt with sub-par quarterback play for years, but that could all change very soon.
Burrow is one of the best quarterback prospects the league has seen entering the draft. He has good size and athleticism to go with his incredible ball placement and accuracy down the field. Burrow checks the box in seemingly every area you could look for in a franchise quarterback, and even an organization like the Bengals will have a hard time messing him up.
Ben Roethlisberger turns 38 years old in March and he is on his last legs. Big Ben gave Pittsburgh an advantage at quarterback over their AFC North rivals for well over a decade, but now it could be Bengals that will soon own that advantage.
With a young, offensive-minded head coach in Zac Taylor and a plethora of receiving threats to go around, the Bengals could see a dramatic spike in offensive efficiency as early as this season. Owning the first overall pick will prove to be huge for Cincinnati as they will land one of the best quarterback prospects we have ever seen.
There is no guarantee that Burrow turns out to be a terrific quarterback at the next level, and if there is a team who hasn’t had much success at the position, it’s the Bengals. However, Joe Burrow is an unusually rare breed of prospect that seems like a sure-fire can’t miss player. If he turns out to be anywhere near as good as he was as a senior at LSU, Burrow could be a nightmare for the Steelers for years to come.