The Bengals may be losing, but Joe Burrow continues to have a rookie season for the ages, and he’s done so thanks to two big games vs. his new in-state rival.
When the Bengals and Browns faced off in Week 2, the top pick of the 2020 NFL Draft made NFL history by completing 37 passes, which is the most by a rookie quarterback in NFL history. He nearly topped that mark in the second matchup with the Browns, as he completed 35/47 passes for 406 yards and three scores with one pick while running for another touchdown.
In the process, the former LSU Tigers Heisman winner became the first rookie quarterback in NFL history to throw for 400+ yards and three scores in a single game. He also became just the fourth rookie in NFL history to have 5+ games of 300+ yards passing in a single season. The record is six held by Colts quarterback Andrew Luck.
It included what nearly was the game-winning touchdown to Giovani Bernard with one minute left.
JOE BURROW. CLUTCH!— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 25, 2020
(via @NFL) pic.twitter.com/41E1BEvNNC
This is also the 25th time in NFL history that a quarterback has thrown for 300+ yards in five of his first seven games.
Burrow is the first rookie quarterback in @NFL history with 400+ passing yards, 3 TD passes and a rushing touchdown in a single game. https://t.co/xFrWHuyycD— NFL345 (@NFL345) October 25, 2020
Joe Burrow has joined Kyler Murray (2019), Daniel Jones (2019) & Andrew Luck (2012) as the only players in NFL history with 5+ games of 300+ pass yds in their rookie season (Andrew Luck leads all rookie QBs with 6 games)— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) October 25, 2020
In fact, Joe Burrow in 2020 is just the 25th time in NFL history that a QB has begun the season with 5+ 300-yard passing games through the first seven games of the season. Not bad.— Josh Wilson (@JoshWilsonSB) October 25, 2020
Burrow also narrowly missed on becoming the all-time rookie passing leader through his first seven career starts, a mark held by Cam Newton from his rookie year with the Panthers.
Most passing yards in NFL history:— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) October 25, 2020
(First 7 career starts)
1. Cam Newton (2,103)
2. Joe Burrow (2,023)#SeizeTheDEY pic.twitter.com/ATSfv0KzXq
Unfortunately, both games ended in losses, the latest being a last-second 37-34 loss to the Browns after losing 35-30 in the first matchup. If he had any semblance of a defense, the Bengals would have a winning record right now.
Instead, the Bengals are now 1-5-1 heading into their Week 8 matchup with the 5-1 Titans, then hit a bye before a Week 10 clash with the 6-0 Steelers.
Based on how the season has gone thus far, Burrow will need to keep having historical performances for the Bengals to have any hope of winning.