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Bengals News (1/5): Joe Burrow’s late push for MVP

Joe Burrow has had an incredible two week span, but is it enough to really catch voters’ attentions?

NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at Cincinnati Bengals Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Game Preview: Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns, Regular Season Week 18, Sunday, January 9, 2022
"You don't want a playoff berth or a division championship to be handed to you — that's something you go take yourself. So we wanted to go do it with a victory. And our guys did that in unbelievable fashion today. It took everybody — some guys just got here, and some guys have been here two, three, five, 10 years. There's a lot of earned emotion in that locker room."

Bengals place five players on Reserve/COVID-19 List
Signed K Elliott Fry to the practice squad. Fry, a first-year player out of the University of South Carolina, originally was a college free agent signee of the Chicago Bears in 2019. He has spent time with the Bears, Ravens, Panthers, Buccaneers, Falcons and Chiefs. He has played two career games, and converted four of five FG attempts.

NFL Power Rankings, Week 18: Bengals crack top five; Cowboys, Colts drop
The Bengals are the most fun team in the NFL right now and second place isn’t even in the rearview. Led by Joe Burrow (971 yards passing over the past two weeks) and Ja’Marr Chase (a rookie-record 266 receiving yards in Week 17), Cincinnati has gone from AFC North afterthought to division champion and legit Super Bowl contender. “I said it in the preseason,” Burrow said after beating the Chiefs. “We were talking about playoffs, and I said that if we were going to go to the playoffs, the easiest way to do that was to win the division. Everyone kind of laughed at us a little bit, but we knew what kind of team we had.” This team believes.

Browns QB Baker Mayfield will not play on Sunday vs. Bengals, will schedule surgery as soon as possible
Stefanski said Mayfield will get surgery scheduled to repair the torn labrum in his left shoulder scheduled as soon as possible. Mayfield confirmed on Monday night he would undergo surgery. He expects Mayfield to be with the team this week unless he has the surgery.

NFL: Ja'Marr Chase over other needs? Bengals made right call
A few weeks prior to the 2021 NFL draft, a veteran talent evaluator with a team picking in the top 15 selections was in the midst of some war-game exercises, with his club playing out various scenarios of how the first allotment of picks might go in Round 1.

What Peyton and Eli Manning said Monday night about Browns, Bengals-Chiefs, Joe Burrow
And you're watching highlights of the Bengals beating the Chiefs, knowing right as you're playing your game, your playoff hopes are over. But probably a smart move - not watching that game. And nice job by Joe Burrow. He's not throwing any touchdowns recently, huh? What's he got - nine in the past two weeks? Geez!" (He's got eight in the past two weeks.)

Zac Taylor and the Bengals take what's rightfully theirs in 2021
Yes, that is exactly what he and the team did by going for it on fourth and one in a tie game at the end of the fourth quarter. This mindset did not start with this game, however, and it seems like this is something that Taylor has thought about a lot, as if it is a creed. Cincinnati has gotten familiar with this mindset.

Bengals QB Joe Burrow Is Making a Late Push in the NFL MVP Race
On Sunday, rookie wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase continued his dazzling debut season by hauling in 11-of-12 targets for a team-record 266 yards and three touchdowns as the Cincinnati Bengals locked up a playoff spot for the first time in six years with a 34-31 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs.

Bengals: AFC playoffs seeding clinching scenarios in Week 18
With the division title comes a top-four seed in the AFC playoffs and at least one home playoff game. But going into Week 18, the Bengals actually still have a slim chance of being the No. 1 seed in the AFC with the right combination of results next week.

Around the league

NFL Offensive Player Rankings, Week 18: Three playoff offenses with serious concerns
Along with his physical ability, Rodgers' attention to detail and deep trust in his receivers have him ranked first in several passing categories, including TD-to-INT ratio (35:4) and passer rating (111.1). Plus, he has the Packers heading into the postseason with one of the best and scariest offenses in the NFL. I have zero concerns with this crew when Rodgers takes the field.

The First Read, Week 18: How Antonio Brown's meltdown has sealed Bucs' fate; Joe Burrow rising
Last week was the time to talk about how smart Cincinnati was to take Chase fifth overall in this year's draft instead of selecting an offensive lineman. This is the week when Chase made this writer look smart for bringing that up. The dude almost singlehandedly dominated one of the hottest defenses, with 11 receptions for 266 yards and three touchdowns in a 34-31 win over Kansas City. Any debate about Offensive Rookie of the Year officially ended on Sunday.

Washington Football Team to unveil new name and logo Feb. 2
The Washington Football Team announced the date it'll announce its new team name. The club will unveil its new name and logo on Feb. 2, 2022. Team president Jason Wright did rule out two potential names -- Wolves and RedWolves -- citing trademarks held by other teams.

Steelers HC Mike Tomlin downplays record 15th season in a row of .500 or better
It is the longest such streak to begin a head coach's career, breaking a tie with Marty Schottenheimer (Cleveland Browns, 1984-1997). It is also the third-longest streak at any point in a head coach's tenure, trailing only Tom Landry with Dallas (21 seasons) and Bill Belichick with New England (19), per NFL Research.