The growth the Cincinnati Bengals have shown from last year to now has been impressive for lack of a better word. From landing Joe Burrow with the 1st pick in 2020, to drafting Ja’Marr Chase with the fifth pick in 2021, the way the Bengals have shaped their roster to make it to the Super Bowl has been incredible. So, let’s look at the success the Bengals have shown in a year nobody even expected them to make the playoffs.
Leading up to the 2020 draft, the Cincinnati Bengals released long time franchise QB Andy Dalton, who had his name swirling around in trade discussions the year prior. So, the Bengals would need to look somewhere else to get their franchise QB. Well, they landed the No.1 pick, so they could have their pick of the crop between Joe Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa, and Justin Herbert. Well they took Burrow, who had an up and down rookie season, before tearing his ACL midway through the season. Before going down, Burrow totaled 2,688 yards, 13 TDs, and eight INTs, with a 65.3 completion %. In 2021, Burrow took a step forward that we’ve hardly ever seen before from a QB. Totaling 4,611 yards, 34 TDs, 14 INTs, and a 70.4 completion %, along with bringing his team to their first division win & sitting at 10-7 with a chance at bringing their team their first Super Bowl trophy in franchise history.
Building a Strong Core
Ja’Marr Chase has been a blessing in disguise for this Bengals offense, continuing his connection with Burrow into their NFL careers. After a preseason where the media painted him as having drop problems, Chase totaled 1,455 yards & 13 TDs on 81 receptions, with 11 drops, and a clear shot at the Offensive Rookie of the year award.
Minus those two players, the Cincinnati Bengals have done a fantastic job building this roster, bringing in Trey Hendrickson in FA last year, and landing guys like Quinton Spain & Vonn Bell in Free Agency. Evan McPherson, Joe Mixon, Tyler Boyd, and Tee Higgins have turned out to be great draft picks as well, with CJ Uzomah looking like he’ll be in for another big season in the 2022-2023 season.