The Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow and his right calf received the much-needed rest during the bye week, precisely what was required. Burrow has been dealing with a calf injury for the past three months, but it seems that he has fully recovered now. According to Ian Rapoport from NFL Media, Joe is now at 100% health just in time for the upcoming NFL game against the San Francisco 49ers.
The Cincinnati Bengals have eagerly anticipated Week 7 as a milestone for Burrow’s recovery. Although he had been removed from the injury report, it wasn’t until Week 5 against the Arizona Cardinals that Burrow truly displayed his usual form. In that crucial 34-20 victory, the fourth-year quarterback threw for an impressive 317 yards and three touchdowns.
In the following week against the tough Seattle Seahawks, Joe showed glimpses of his standard performance during the first half. However, he encountered difficulties connecting with his receivers in the final 30 minutes. Despite this setback, his agility remained evident, and the Bengals managed a close 17-13 win.
With an additional week of rest and recovery, it is expected that Joe will return to the version of himself that everyone is familiar with, as noted by Dianna Russini of The Athletic. In facing the 5-2 San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium, the Bengals will rely on Burrow’s full capabilities this afternoon. Notably, his previous encounter with the 49ers showcased one of the most impressive performances of his young career despite the Bengals’ overtime loss at home.
A different outcome today would propel the Bengals over a .500 win-loss record for the first time this season, positioning them for a second-half surge in the AFC.
What We Learned 2023, Burrow had an outstanding 2021 NFL season, finishing first in PFF passing grade among qualified players and securing a QB9 overall fantasy finish with an average of 19.6 points per game. Remarkably, he repeated this success in 2022, improving his overall fantasy finish to QB4 and raising his points per game average to 21.9. Burrow consistently delivered impressive performances, with only five weekly finishes falling outside the top 12 and six top-5 efforts, including three weeks as the QB1 overall.
Taking a closer look at the numbers reveals just how exceptional Burrow was in 2022. Among the 24 quarterbacks who had 400+ dropbacks, he ranked 8th in adjusted completion percentage (77.3%), 8th in yards per attempt (7.3), 6th in passer rating (99.0), 2nd in passing yards (5,195), and 2nd in passing touchdowns (39). It’s important to note that Burrow achieved all of this behind a Bengals offensive line that ranked 31st in PFF pass-blocking grade.
Additionally, Burrow showcased his versatility in 2022 by nearly doubling his previous career-highs in rushing yards (257) and rushing touchdowns (5). Despite not being known for his scrambling ability, it’s encouraging to see his progress since recovering from the devastating multi-ligament knee injury he suffered in 2020.
Looking ahead to 2023, Burrow has a top-notch wide receiver duo in Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins, which bodes well for another exceptional season. Furthermore, the Bengals’ offensive line is set to receive a significant boost with the addition of four-time Pro Bowl offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr., who has consistently ranked within the top 20 of PFF pass blocking grade among offensive tackles with over 1,000 snaps annually.
In summary, there’s no need to overthink it: Burrow is undoubtedly a top-5 fantasy QB for the 2023 season.
When a quarterback has an injured calf, their throwing mechanics can be significantly affected. The calf muscle plays a crucial role in the throwing motion, as it helps generate power and stabilize the body during the release of the ball. Without proper use of the calf muscle, a QB may struggle with accuracy, velocity, and consistency in their throws.
One of the main ways an injured calf can impact throwing mechanics is by limiting the ability to push off from the ground with the back foot fully. This creates an imbalance in the body, which can lead to inaccurate passes as well as a decrease in throwing power. The quarterback may also have difficulty transferring weight from their back foot to their front foot, resulting in a less fluid and natural throwing motion.
Furthermore, an injured calf can also affect a quarterback’s footwork. This can be especially problematic for those who rely on precise footwork and timing in their throws. With limited mobility and range of motion, it may be challenging to execute certain types of throws or be unable to make adjustments while under pressure from the defense.
There is always a risk of a more serious injury when playing football, especially at the quarterback position. However, Burrow’s specific injury to his calf may not necessarily put him at an increased risk for another major injury. The Bengals’ medical staff will likely closely monitor his recovery and limit his workload as needed.
It is also worth noting that Burrow is a young and physically fit athlete, which can aid in his recovery and help prevent future injuries. With proper rehabilitation and training, he should be able to return to the field without significant risk of re-injury.
It is important for Burrow to listen to his body and not rush back onto the field before he is confident he is fully recovered. Playing through an injury can potentially lead to compensation injuries or exacerbate the existing injury, which could result in a longer recovery time.
As always, it is crucial for athletes to prioritize their health and well-being above all else. While Burrow may be eager to get back on the field and help his team, he must also consider the long-term effects of playing through an injury.
The Cincinnati Bengals are once again experiencing a slow start to the season. Despite being considered favorites for the Super Bowl, their offense is currently one of the lowest-scoring in the league. They are averaging nearly 10 points less per game compared to last year. It’s clear that Bengals Joe Burrow, Ja’Marr Chase, Zac Taylor, and the rest of the offense need to reflect on their performance.
Heading into their bye week in Week 7, the Bengals have only mustered a mere three points in a game on two occasions. In the previous season, they never scored below 13 points in any game, and in the season before that, their lowest-scoring NFL game was 15 points. While Joes’s calf injury and Tee Higgins’ rib injury may have had an impact on their performance, it’s crucial for the team not to use them as excuses. It is concerning to see Cincinnati being outscored by teams such as the winless Carolina Panthers and the New York Jets, led by Zach Wilson, in the first six games. Let’s hope they bounce back stronger after the bye week.
The Bengals are acutely aware of the necessity to create additional scoring drives, as emphasized by Ben Baby of ESPN.
“Not where we want to be,” Joe Burrow said about the Cincinnati Bengals’ offense via ESPN. “We’ve had moments of play well. But we just gotta put it all together.” Despite securing a victory against the Seattle Seahawks, which brought their record back to .500, Burrow remains resolute in holding his unit accountable and not letting them off the hook.
The Bengals’ offensive coordinator, Brian Callahan, shares the same sentiment as his superstar quarterback, stressing the importance of not settling for their current level of performance. Cincinnati is facing tough competition in their division, with no weak opponents in sight. Each team boasts a winning record and either an exceptional pass rush or an offense capable of going toe-to-toe with any opponent. In such a fiercely competitive environment, there is no room for error.
“That’s clear as day,” Taylor said. “We haven’t scored enough to really take the pressure off our team. We know we’re capable enough to do that.”
In Week 8, the Bengals will resume play against the formidable San Francisco 49ers. Before facing one of the NFL’s finest and most well-rounded teams, it is imperative for them to discover avenues of improvement. This will undoubtedly be a challenging matchup that demands their utmost effort.
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