Joe Burrow needs to tell the Bengals not to draft him

Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals have every reason to draft Joe Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick. The standout quarterback also has every reason to want to avoid the Bengals.

Joe Burrow is the top prospect in the 2019 NFL Draft. The Bengals desperately need a franchise quarterback to inject life into their moribund franchise. That doesn’t mean Burrow deserves to be forced to play for Cincinnati.

Instead, Burrow needs to enact an Eli Manning like power play. The former Giants star engineered his way to New York by making it clear to the Chargers he had no interest in playing for their franchise. The end result was a pre-draft trade where the Giants sent multiple draft picks to the Chargers in exchange for the right to draft Manning with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2004 Draft.

Manning was widely criticized for his decision to snub the Chargers at the time, but it allowed him to become a Super Bowl champion in New York. Rest assured, no one will be talking about Manning’s refusal to play with the Chargers during his Hall of Fame induction in a few seasons.

Burrow and his representatives should use Manning’s blueprint to keep the talented signal caller away from the mess that is the Bengals. The LSU standout only needs to listen to former Cincinnati quarterback Carson Palmer’s opinion on playing for the organization.

He recently told CBS Sports Radio that he never believed the Bengals were “committed” to winning a Super Bowl. That played a large role in his decision to leave the team that drafted him No. 1 overall in 2003. Mike Brown was the owner when the Bengals drafted Palmer and he remains in charge of the team’s affairs today. His presence in Cincinnati should be a huge red flag for Burrow.

Watching tape of the Bengals’ putrid 2-14 record last year should also give Burrow plenty of reasons to want to be drafted elsewhere. Cincinnati has some high-end talent on offense, but their inability to protect their quarterback is a huge issue. Burrow isn’t an overly mobile quarterback. He can avoid the rush in tight spaces, but he lacks the foot speed and agility required to thrive outside the pocket.

Last year’s performance is just a symptom of the dysfunction in Cincinnati though. The problems with the franchise go much deeper. Ownership just hasn’t demonstrated a real commitment to expend the sort of resources required to build a consistent winner. Burrow is talented enough to make the Bengals respectable, but he’ll have to be the best player in the NFL to make them a legitimate Super Bowl contender. Palmer is a perfect example of what might happen to Burrow if he sits tight and allows Cincinnati to draft him with the first pick.

The right move for Burrow is to have his camp reach out to other quarterback needy teams in this year’s draft about making Cincinnati a big offer to move them off of the No. 1 pick. Ironically, the Chargers could be the beneficiary of a quarterback’s power play this time around. They aren’t the only team who could be interested in giving up a ton of draft capital to select Burrow, but they would represent a superior landing spot when compared to the Bengals.

Next: Redskins need to trade the No. 2 pick

The bottom line is that it makes a lot of business sense for Burrow to snub the Bengals. That might not be the popular choice, but the NFL is a results based business. Burrow can do a lot more with another franchise.

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