Joe Burrow made a statement by showing up for OTAs this week, despite still needing time before he can be fully cleared for all football activities.
Nevertheless, Burrow is taking care to protect his surgically-repaired knee, according to Geoff Hobson.
“I’m a guy that likes to push the limits. Work hard and go above and beyond,” he told Hobson. “I couldn’t do that with the knee. Just doing what the doctors tell me to do, not doing anything too fast. Being cautious. We are out of the hardest part. Now the fun part begins.
“Still got to be patient. Can’t push too hard. At this point it’s still how it feels, there are still good days and bad days. It’s still sore somedays and so you will take it a little easy and somedays it feels really good and you’ll push it really hard. But we have a good plan. I have a good team around me that is helping me get back.”
Burrow is the closest to a practice that he has been since November, so obviously things are not going to be perfect for him.
Head coach Zac Taylor is taking precautions as well to keep his franchise quarterback safe.
“Anytime you see a ball roll back there or anybody standing within 10 feet I was usually yelling at them to get away,” Taylor said. “It’s probably overly cautious, but that’s just the way we’re going to start this thing. He’s only taking snaps from an empty backfield right now.”
Hobson mentioned that Burrow didn’t take any snaps from under center and only played with empty backfields. The main purpose of these practices are to get new offensive linemen used to his cadence and to work out timing with new receivers.
Burrow says he is still on track to start in Week 1 against the Minnesota Vikings. He’s not ruling out the preseason at this point. He and Taylor just want to make sure he stays on pace to do just that.