April 15, 2024

The 2023 NFL season ended prematurely for quarterback Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals due to injuries, which limited him to just 10 games. He now has a timeframe for when he will be completely cleared to resume contact, and it is anticipated that he will be ready for the start of the 2024 season.

This past weekend, Burrow told ESPN that he anticipates being cleared to throw and make contact by the time the team’s offseason practices begin in mid-May.

He is gradually working his way up to footballs after beginning with little medicine balls.

In November, Burrow’s throwing hand suffered a damaged wrist ligament, ending his season.

Joe Burrow

That came after he was limited earlier in the season by a training camp calf injury that did not fully begin to heal until several weeks into the campaign. That injury clearly limited his productivity over the first two months of the season and played a role in the Bengals’ slow start.

Backup Jake Browning took over in Burrow’s absence and led the Bengals to a 4-3 record, exceeding expectations along the way. The three losses during Browning’s starts were to playoff teams in the Pittsburgh Steelers (twice) and Kansas City Chiefs.

As promising as Browning’s play was, the Bengals have to be ecstatic about the possibility of getting a fully healthy Burrow back with a fresh start. He is one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks and helps lift them to the status of a legitimate Super Bowl contender.

The Bengals still have some work to do in improving their defense and offensive line to help protect Burrow, but a franchise quarterback masks a lot of flaws.

The Bengals were 5-2 in the seven games leading up to Burrow’s wrist injury, when he was playing his best football of the season.

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