Joe Burrow Leads Bengals To First AFC Championship Game Since 1988 | He’s Got The Juice

(Photo: @joemainmixon/Instagram)

When the Cincinnati Bengals drafted Joe Burrow No. 1 overall in the 2020 NFL draft they dreamed of days like this. But even they probably didn’t believe Burrow would have them one game from their first Super Bowl since 1988-89 in just his second season.

Burrow stood in the pocket and made throw after throw, despite his offensive line giving up nine sacks to a hellacious Titans pass rush.

He finished the day 28-for-37 for 348 yards and one interception. It was a signature performance that announced his arrival as a problem for the AFC.

Kicker Evan McPherson was the real MVP as he went 4-4 on field goals including the walkoff sending the fans in Nashville home shocked.

In his postgame presser, McPherson downplayed the magnitude of his perfection and said:

“I went out and did my job.”

Bengals Hadn’t Won A Playoff Game In 31 Years: Now They’ve Won Two Under Burrow

Prior to this year’s playoffs the Bengals hadn’t won a playoff game in 31 years, now with “Joe Cool” they’ve beaten the Raiders and top-seeded Titans. The play of Burrow stands out because he just never seems rattled or sped up. He plays at his own pace with the belief that he’s going to make the play. The 25-year-old possesses Tom Brady-like intangibles.

The fearless leadership of Burrow seems to resonate through the team, who seemed unfazed by the raucous crowd in Nashville. Burrow is ready for whoever or whatever next week.

“We’re moving forward,” the former No. 1 overall draft pick said. “We’re ready for whoever next week.”

He displayed the moxie, toughness and intangibles he showed while leading LSU to the CFP national title just two years and nine days ago.

The defense seemed to feed off Burrow’s grit as they stood tall and played even better than expected. They made timely plays, including three interceptions off the arm of Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill. That and a huge defensive stand on 4th-and-1 as they stopped locomotive Derrick Henry on a pivotal play.

FS1 personality Shannon Sharpe tweeted this in reaction to the Bengals’ clutch performance.

Bengals Hunting First Super Bowl Since 1988

Not since the days of Boomer Esiason, Ickey Woods, James Brooks and Hall of Fame tackle Anthony Munoz has a Bengals team been this close to Super Sunday. Now they’ll have a chance to advance to the big game next week as they await the winner of the Chiefs and Bills divisional game on Sunday night.

Who can forget the 1988 Super Bowl, when it looked like Esiason and Cincy had the first title in franchise history locked up until legendary Joe Montana hit John Taylor in the endzone for the winning score? Nobody from Ohio old enough to remember that stunning loss will ever forget, but the rising success of Joe Burrow is making it much easier.


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