Joe Burrow Player Profile
Joe Burrow is the definition of an NFL-Ready quarterback prospect. He seems to be the most NFL-Ready quarterback prospect since Andrew Luck. With little-to-no flaws in his gameplay, Burrow is set and ready to be a franchise cornerstone and an elite gamechanger.
Burrow has many great traits and skills that have flourished in Baton Rouge. Former LSU passing-game coordinator Joe Brady helped mold the 2019 LSU passing attack after the New Orleans Saints offense, after he spent two years as an offensive assistant for the Saints from 2017-2018. Although, he is now the offensive coordinator for the Carolina Panthers, Brady helped magnify the capabilities of Burrow and allowed him to flourish in the offense.
Pros: Burrow has outstanding accuracy, which is one of his best traits. He can make almost any throw that he’s asked to make, and you can be confident he’ll hit his mark. He has great pocket presence and awareness that allows him to anticipate pressure and make the best decision. His football IQ is amazing and he can pick apart a defense before the ball is snapped while commanding the offense to perfection. His patience is excellent and he’ll make the correct read if he is given time. Burrow has great anticipation and the ability to throw his receivers open. If there is a window, Burrow will find it and expose the defense. Joe stays cool under pressure and seems to play the game with great confidence, whether the game is a blowout, or a tie-game. His ability to make plays with his feet is also a great trait that Burrow possesses. In both his junior and senior year at LSU, Burrow rushed for almost 400 yards in both seasons, to go along with 12 combined rushing touchdowns. Burrow has sneaky athleticism and speed and can make plays happen on his own.
Cons: It’s not the easiest task to find flaws in Burrow’s game, but one could point out his arm power. He’s certainly not going to out-sling a Patrick Mahomes bomb, but he has a rather average arm that sometimes causes a ball to hang in the air a little longer than required. One other complaint may be his age. Burrow is 23 and will turn 24 during his rookie campaign, but quarterbacks seem to be elongating their prime and this shouldn’t be much cause for concern.
Comparison: Joe Burrow shows a lot of traits that can be mirrored in Alex Smith. No, this isn’t the flashiest comparison, and it’s certainly not the Tom Brady comparison that’s been tossed around so far, but it is however, an accurate one. Being an elite game manager, and a reliable and safe player, is what Alex Smith was known for in the NFL. Smith also made plays on the ground when he was needed and was sneaky fast when he outran defenders to the first-down marker. Burrow shows a lot of the same skills and has even gained praise from the coach who recruited him. When first being recruited to Ohio State, Urban Meyer compared Burrow to Alex Smith, who he coached in Utah. While I do think Burrow has a higher ceiling than Smith, it all depends on the situation he is put in after he is drafted.
Expectations: Although any scenario is possible, I do expect Burrow to go No. 1 in the NFL draft to the Cincinnati Bengals. This situation would put Burrow in a tough spot that would be hard to succeed in. The Bengals front office is bad, and haven’t done a good job in building a capable roster. Hopefully the Bengals surround him with weapons and protection in order to develop him as carefully as possible. I expect Burrow to be a star in the league and potentially another face of the NFL.
Ceiling: Drew Brees
Floor: Alex Smith