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Film Room: What No. 1 overall pick Joe Burrow brings to the Bengals

This is the guy.

2020 NFL Draft - Round 1 Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images

With the first overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Bengals selected LSU quarterback Joe Burrow.

Burrow was not a top draft prospect heading into the 2019 season, and yet he put together the best season for a quarterback in college football history. He threw for 5,671 yards and 60 (yes, 60) touchdowns, completing 76.3% of his passes and throwing only six interceptions while leading his team to 15-0 record and a College Football Playoffs National Championship.

Oh yeah, he also won the Heisman Trophy.

It’s not just that he got better year-to-year, he got better week-to-week.

In October he was a legitimate contender to be the first player selected, but by January it was obvious that there could be no other choice.

Take a look at some of the things that make Joe Burrow great.


Burrow’s accuracy and ball placement are off the charts. In the clip above he zips the ball in between four Georgia Bulldogs to find his man for the touchdown on 3rd and goal.

The Bengals struggled in the red zone last season.

This will help.

And if you like tight window throws, you’ll love this.

Again there are four defenders close to the ball, but it is the two deeper defenders who really matter.

One is trailing Justin Jefferson so Burrow has to put the ball in front of him, but he can’t put it too far in front or the other defender will be able to make a play on the ball.

Once again, this is a perfect ball and touchdown Tigers.

Deep Balls

Perhaps Burrow’s best throw is the back shoulder fade.

Here is a great example. Alabama cornerback Trevon Diggs is doing a great job, running stride-for-stride with LSU wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase. Diggs’s back is turned away from the quarterback, so he is not able to read the ball and adjust to the throw. He can only adjust to what Chase does.

Burrow knows this, so he puts the ball behind Chase, who makes a great adjustment for the touchdown catch and there is nothing that Diggs can do about it.

While he loves to throw the back shoulder fade, he can hit the deep ball in stride when he wants to and he shows that on this touchdown pass to Jefferson.

Under Pressure

Burrow is incredible under pressure and he shows that here as he steps up in the collapsing pocket and throws a beautiful deep ball for the touchdown.

He can also create outside of the pocket.

On this play he is getting pressured off of the right edge. He steps in front of the pass rush and escapes to the right, keeping his eyes down field and finding Jefferson for the long touchdown.

Running Man

When Burrow wants to run, he can make plays with his feet. Here Clemson sends five rushers and all five are picked up by the offensive line.

This leaves only one unblocked defender in the box. Burrow sees this defender to his right so he takes off towards the left for the touchdown.

Football is a numbers game, and Burrow understands this.

But that was a short run on the goal line, can he really run in the open field?

He takes off on this 3rd and long draw play and 29 yards later the Bayou Bengals have 1st and goal.

Burrow is a stud who can make plays in so many ways. This was a huge addition for the Bengals and signals a new era in Cincinnati.