A wrench was thrown in Bengals training camp when star quarterback Joe Burrow was carted off of the field after suffering a calf injury that is reportedly set to sideline him for several weeks. That, of course, brings into question whether or not he'll be available to Cincinnati when it kicks off the 2023 regular season on Sept. 10.
While Burrow lining up under center, of course, gives the Bengals their best chance to win on a weekly basis, his go-to wide receiver, Ja'Marr Chase, doesn't want to see his quarterback on the field in Cleveland when they play the Browns if he is not 100%. Instead, Chase would rather Burrow adopt a similar approach to what he did a season ago as he eased his way back from a hip injury.
"I told him that with all honesty I don't want him there," Chase told the NFL Network on Friday. "Same thing with me last year. I sat out an extra game just to let my hip all the way heal up, and you don't want to cause no other problems later on in the season, and I told him as long as you're there after Week 5 and on, we're good brother."
Chase is correct in his thinking that Burrow should take his time returning to prevent other injuries from entering the equation. After all, the Bengals are in the thick of the Super Bowl conversation entering the year and Burrow is at the center of those Lombardi expectations. Currently, Cincinnati has the fourth-highest odds to win Super Bowl LVIII and sits just behind the Chiefs and Bills to win the AFC.
The receiver also noted that he is unsure when he'll specifically have his quarterback back on the field.
"He just told me he's going to see how he feels when the time comes," Chase said. "You know, he doesn't know when he'll be back, but he'll be back soon."
After opening up the year in Cleveland against the Browns, the Bengals will have back-to-back home games against the Ravens and Rams before heading down to Nashville to face to Titans to round out the first month of the season. If Burrow were to miss time, Cincinnati has Trevor Siemian, Jake Browning, and Reid Sinnett as its backup quarterbacks at the moment.