“See ya next year,” tweeted Joe Burrow as the Cincinnati Bengals star reflected on what looks like a serious knee injury for the quarterback.
The Bengals have yet to publicly comment on the extent of the injury, but according to the NFL’s Ian Rapaport, based on an initial diagnosis, the first overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft has torn his left anterior cruciate ligament (ACL).
The injury occurred in the third quarter of a tightly contested game between Cincinnati Bengals and the Washington Football Team, with Cincinnati leading 9-7.
Washington’s defensive line overwhelmed the Bengals’ offensive line, and as the pocket collapsed, Jonathan Allen was pushed down onto Burrow’s left leg by one of the Bengals’ offensive guards.
To make matters worse, Washington’s Montez Sweat had made it through on the opposite side and hit the young quarterback on the right side as Allen fell. Consequentially, with Burrow’s body being pushed in two directions, his left leg appeared to bend awkwardly.
The 2019 Heisman Trophy winner was left lying on the floor clutching his left knee, before being carted off the field.
Both members of the Bengals and Washington came over to commiserate with Burrow as he was taken back to the locker room.
Burrow’s replacement was Ryan Finley as the Bengals ended up losing the game 20-9.
Before the game had even finished, Burrow tweeted: “Thanks for all the love. Can’t get rid of me that easy. See ya next year.”
His injury will be devastating to Bengals fans’ hopes of their team improving on their current record of 2-7-1.
Burrow had been having an exceptional year as a rookie quarterback, throwing 13 touchdowns and rushing for three more, while throwing only five interceptions in 10 games.
He had been expected to be a frontrunner for the Offensive Rookie of the Year award. However, this may have now been sealed by Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, who has thrown 22 touchdowns and rushed for three more, while being intercepted six times in nine games.
Herbert also has five three-touchdown games this season, and seven in a row with at least two, both NFL rookie records.
Pittsburgh Steelers still unbeaten
Elsewhere in the NFL, the Pittsburgh Steelers remain undefeated as they blew out the Jacksonville Jaguars 27-3.
Victory took Pittsburgh to a record of 10-0.
The Jaguars are still without starting quarterback Gardner Minshew and it showed, as backup Jake Luton threw four interceptions and completed less than 50% of his pass attempts.
Young Steelers duo Terrell Edmunds and Minkah Fitzpatrick each twice picked off Luton.
Ben Roethlisberger threw two touchdowns, including one to rookie phenom Chase Claypool who now has 10 touchdown receptions for the season.
Pittsburgh’s remaining opponents this season are the Baltimore Ravens, Washington, Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts and Cleveland Browns.
They should claim victories over weak Washington and Cincinnati teams, however the Buffalo Bills, Indianapolis Colts and Cleveland Browns all have 7-3 records and could offer strong resistance in the Steelers’ quest for an unbeaten season.
Additionally, Pittsburgh’s AFC North rival Browns and Ravens both need every win they can muster to ensure a spot in the playoffs.
Last year’s Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs are in hot pursuit of the Steelers, and possess an impressive 9-1 record, winning all of their five most recent games.
Sunday night’s game against their AFC West rival Las Vegas Raiders was a thriller.
Down by three with two minutes left, 2018 NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes led his team up the field, and threw the game-winning touchdown pass to his All-Pro tight end Travis Kelce, who himself finished the game with an impressive eight receptions and 127 receiving yards.
If both the Chiefs and Steelers continue their current run of form all the way to the AFC Championship game, it is hard to see an NFC opponent offering up enough resistance to challenge either one of them in the Super Bowl.