Burrow is OK, Bengals move on after OT loss to Packers
CINCINNATI (AP) — The Cincinnati Bengals’ strange overtime loss Sunday was overshadowed by news that quarterback Joe Burrow got a precautionary postgame trip to the hospital.
Burrow, already playing on a surgically repaired left knee, was beaten up in the 25-22 loss to Green Bay, suffering a throat bruise that affected his voice afterward. Coach Zac Taylor reported that Burrow wasn’t admitted to the hospital and is expected to play against Detroit this week.
“Joe’s back in the building,” Taylor said. “He’s in good shape. (I) expect no limitations from him, but we’ll take it day to day.”
Sunday’s game was finally settled by Packers kicker Mason Crosby, who missed three potential winning field goals before finally hitting a 49-yarder in overtime.
Burrow was sacked three times and hit eight other times but isn’t sure when his throat was hit. It could have been a violent tackle by two Packers at the end of a second-quarter run that left him on the ground for an extended period. But he ran off under his own power and was on the field for the next series.
Burrow finished with 281 passing yards and two touchdowns but also threw two interceptions.
Kicker Evan McPherson could have won the game late for the Bengals (3-2) but missed on two field-goal attempts, one with 26 seconds left in regulation and again in overtime.
It was a tough way to lose to the Packers and Aaron Rodgers, who threw for 344 yards and two touchdowns.
“There’s a lot of teams that each week walk off the field and they feel like there’s just an inch here or there that would have made a difference,” Taylor said Sunday. “And today just didn’t go our way. It hurts to lose, but we’ve got to pick ourselves up and go on the road next week.”
The Burrow-to-Ja’Marr Chase connection. Chase, a former teammate and favorite target of Burrow at LSU, has been outstanding after dealing with dropped passes in the preseason. He caught six of 10 targets for a season-high 159 yards, including a 70-yard touchdown late in the first half that cut Green Bay’s lead to 16-14.
WHAT NEEDS HELP
Pass protection, as usual. It’s better than last year but hasn’t been good enough against top opponents to keep the team’s franchise quarterback from being battered. Burrow was lost for the season to a knee injury in Week 11 last year and had to work his way back in 2021 after surgery.
Much maligned last season, the defense is improved and did an impressive job stopping the Packers in crucial situations and forcing them to bring on Crosby for field goal attempts a total of seven times (he converted four). Cincinnati was on the verge of winning several times against a perennial playoff team, and the defense was a big reason.
“The defense is holding it down for the offense,” Chase said. “They’re giving us the ball back and opportunities, making plays. We’ve just got to capitalize on stuff like that. We have the ball, we have to take advantage of it.”
McPherson, the rookie out of Florida, already had two winning field goals this season. He had converted 5 of 6 attempts coming into the game, but had a rough afternoon. With 26 seconds left in regulation his 57-yard attempt bounced off the right upright. With another chance in overtime, McPherson thought he had a 49-yarder — he jumped into the arms of holder Kevin Huber after he hit it —that went just left at the top of the upright.
19.8 — average yards per catch this season for Chase through five games (23 catches, 456 yards).
LB Jordan Evans (knee) was put on injured reserve Monday. G Jackson Carman and RB Samaje Perine went on the reserve/COVID-19 list. ... Taylor said safety Jessie Bates, who was hurt late in the game, will be OK for Sunday.
The Bengals have a great chance to pick up another victory against the 0-5 Lions. If Cincinnati can prevail, it will equal its win total for all of last season (4-11-1).
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