Bengals QB Joe Burrow out for rest of rookie season with torn ACL, MCL

What the Cincinnati Bengals feared turned into a reality.

An MRI done on Monday revealed Joe Burrow’s tore the ACL and MCL in his left knee, a person with knowledge of the injury told The Enquirer and USA TODAY Network. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the team had not announced the diagnosis. The Bengals starting quarterback is out for the remainder of the season.

Burrow injured his left knee when the pocket collapsed as he released a throw to wide receiver Tyler Boyd on third and two during the third quarter in the Washington Football Team’s 20-9 Week 11 win. Washington defensive tackle Jonathan Allen was blocked into Burrow’s left plant leg at the end of his throwing motion and defensive end Montez Sweat hit the quarterback from the opposite side.

The Bengals quarterback laid on the ground writhing in pain as the team’s medical staff rushed to the field. Burrow was helped up a few moments later, and he was unable to put any weight on his left leg as a cart waited nearby. Once Burrow was placed on the cart, the entire Bengals team gathered around the quarterback to wish him well.

“Saw him and told him to keep his head up, man. This sucks. That’s the game we play,” Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green said. “Injuries that come with playing this sport, man. It’s tough.”

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Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow (9) is helped getting off the field during the second half of an NFL football game against the Washington Football Team, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020, in Landover, Md.

Burrow was 22-for-34 passing for 203 yards and he had one touchdown at the time of his injury. The Bengals declared him out later on in the third quarter.

The quarterback’s season-ending left knee injury is devastating news for the Bengals organization. Burrow was having a dazzling rookie campaign and he reinvigorated the Bengals fan base. In Week 7, Burrow joined Andrew Luck, Daniel Jones and Kyler Murray as the fourth rookie quarterback to throw for 300+ yards five times in the same season (Chargers QB Justin Herbert became the fifth in Week 11). He was also on pace to break Luck’s single-season rookie passing record of 4,374 yards.

Despite Burrow’s superb rookie statistics, there was perpetual concern about the Bengals’ ability to protect the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL draft. Cincinnati started its sixth different offensive line group in Sunday’s loss.

Burrow was sacked 32 times this year, the third most in all of football, and he was routinely hit in each of his 10 starts.

The Bengals quarterback wasn’t sacked once on Sunday prior to suffering an ACL injury. However, he was hit multiple times in the pocket, the last hit Burrow received at FedEx Field was the debilitating blow.  

The Bengals must now finish out the season with Ryan Finley at quarterback while Burrow has surgery and rehabilitates his left knee.

“Thanks for all the love,” Burrow tweeted on Sunday. “Can’t get rid of me that easy. See ya next year.”

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