Round 1: Joe Burrow, QB, LSU
There isn’t a quarterback more suited to start as a rookie in 2020 than the Heisman Trophy winner, Joe Burrow. For starters, he’s shown the ability to adapt at a high rate as he improved dramatically from his junior season. He had a career-high completion percentage while posting a record-breaking year with passing yards and touchdowns and throwing just six interceptions.
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LSU passing coordinator Joe Brady came over from the New Orleans Saints, installing pro-style concepts that allowed Burrow to flourish. Burrow was absolutely perfect after defeating Texas early in the season, looking dominant every game, no matter the opponent. His run was historic as he never looked out of it.
With that experience and success, Burrow’s floor is solid. No, he doesn’t have elite arm power but he has good arm strength. He’s capable of making all the throws in Zac Taylor’s offense. Burrow is made for a play-action timing offense like Taylor’s.
No matter what happens with A.J. Green, the Bengals have weapons for Burrow to work with as Boyd, Tate and Ross are a fine trio — though some late-round additions certainly wouldn’t hurt.
Thanks to Burrow’s athleticism, inside and out of the pocket, he can mask some of the problems along the offensive line. He can also run read options which will help boost the running game led by Mixon. Burrow’s solid arm, great accuracy, timing and athletic traits make him enticing and, if the Bengals want to make a big splash, they’ll back up the Brinks truck to Joe Brady and get the package deal.