The Cincinnati Bengals, in their season and home opener, lost 16-13. With a game-winning catch by A.J. Green nullified by offensive pass interference, the Bengals controlled their own destiny late in the game.
Burrow did take Cincinnati almost 70 yards with just over three minutes to go, showing veteran poise. In his debut, he may have graded himself a “D,” but many thought it a solid first game.
Although Burrow managed to take the lead, the team failed to hold it, allowing Los Angeles to outscore them 16-6 after scoring the first points of the game. Sadly, the Bengals dropped to 0-1, a position fans have grown used to over the last few seasons.
That said, let’s dive into each major media outlet and their NFL Power Rankings for the Bengals. Cincinnati started in the mid-to-late 20s, as we can see here.
ESPN — No. 31
“Burrow almost wins this by default considering no other rookie played a significant role in Week 1. Burrow was 23-of-36 passing for 193 yards, one interception and one rushing touchdown. The resolve the rookie showed was the most impressive part of his debut. On Cincinnati’s last drive, Burrow was 8-of-11 for 70 yards and came close to throwing a game-winning touchdown to A.J. Green. Burrow looked like a rookie but displayed traits that indicate he could be as good as advertised,” Ben Baby wrote.
NBC Sports — No. 27
“Bad teams often have bad kickers. And buzzard’s luck. Joey Burrow’s going to experience some heartbreak. It’s the curse of being a top pick. Best college quarterback generally goes to a terrible team,” Scott Bair wrote.
CBS Sports — No. 24
“Joe Burrow didn’t win his first game as starter, but he did some good things and should have had a game-tying drive were it not for a missed field goal. He has a short week to get ready for the Browns,” Pete Prisco wrote.
Bleacher Report — Consensus rank No. 30
The Ringer — No. 30
Sporting News — No. 28
“The Bengals saw a confident Joe Burrow in his debut, but they also saw his rookie-ness in missing a few throws and succumbing to pressure against a good Chargers pass defense. That said, they had to be very pleased with their defensive improvement, even with the bad special teams ending,” Vinnie Iyer wrote.