The biggest story for the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2022 offseason was their revamped offensive line. Despite making it all the way to the Super Bowl, their protection for quarterback Joe Burrow was extremely suspect. The expectation was that with a brand-new line with new players, Burrow would be sacked less.
Well, two games in, and Joe Burrow is already leading the league in sacks taken. This has got to be worrying news for Bengals fans, who were hoping that Burrow could have another breakthrough in his third year. While it’s easy to blame the offensive line for these woes, though, the QB also takes the blame for some of these sacks. (via NFL on FOX)
Joe Burrow has taken the most hits so far this season pic.twitter.com/odOItCdp6R
— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) September 19, 2022
Yes, the Bengals’ offensive line has looked bad in their attempt to protect Joe Burrow. Thirteen sacks don’t happen with a good offensive line, after all. However, Burrow has been criticized by fans for his refusal to throw the ball away and looking for a big play.
All in all, the Bengals’ Joe Burrow problem stems from a combination of issues: lack of chemistry between the new linemen, Burrow’s penchant for big plays, and Zac Taylor’s suspect play-calling. The last two games have been problematic for them, as they lost to two teams they were expected to beat.
The good news is even though the protection has been bad, the team has been playing well enough that they aren’t getting blown out in games. The Bengals defense has done their best to mitigate the damage to the team. With a tough schedule ahead of them, the Bengals must fix their issues, or they’ll be left in the dust by their division rivals.