Joe Burrow propelled the Cincinnati Bengals past the Atlanta Falcons on a record-setting day.
Burrow and the vaunted aerial attack of the Bengals took complete advantage of a Falcons secondary that was already without Casey Hayward and lost A.J. Terrell due to a hamstring injury very early in the game. He completed 34-of-42 passes for 481 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions through the air. He also had three carries for 30 yards and a rushing touchdown.
In total, Burrow amassed 501 yards of offense for the Bengals and accounted for four of the team’s five touchdowns on the afternoon. No other player has done it twice in the regular season.
While Ben Roethlisberger was able to accomplish this feat twice in his career, one of those games was in a playoff defeat. Regardless, Burrow put up video game numbers on the Falcons defense.
Cincinnati improved to 4-3 and seems to have finally turned the corner after a slow start to 2022.
Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow carves up Falcons defense to make NFL history
Despite having personal investment in this game that did not work out for me, it was abundantly clear from the opening kickoff that the Bengals had a massive advantage over the Falcons today.
Yes, the Bengals are more talented and yes, they have the better Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback under center. However, it takes a great deal of poise to stand in the pocket and make the throws.
Atlanta was able to generate some pass-rush in the game, but Burrow always seemed to make the big play with his arm, and even a few with his legs, to keep the depleted Dirty Birds defensive backfield on its heels all day. This was a game the Bengals had to win. They seized control from Atlanta very early on in the third quarter. It was one of those games that makes Burrow so special.
Cincinnati needs to be ready for what should be an especially chippy and spooky one next week, as the Bengals will take on the arch rival Cleveland Browns at their place on Halloween night for Monday Night Football. As for Atlanta, the Falcons need to pick up the pieces and get healthy quickly. They have a winnable game at home next week vs. the Carolina Panthers who just won.
As long as Burrow stays upright and on the field, the Bengals are going to be so difficult to beat.