Bengals believe Joe Burrow's skillset will make life easier on the offensive line

James Rapien

The Bengals offensive line is arguably the biggest question mark on the team going into the 2020 season. 

They believe the addition of 2019 first-round pick Jonah Williams is going to make a difference upfront. They're also hoping Xavier Su'a-Filo will be an upgrade at right guard. 

The coaching staff has high hopes for the offensive line, but that isn't the only reason they're optimistic about the trenches. They think Joe Burrow will make life easier on the entire offensive line.

"Joe's ability to move his feet in the pocket I think is really what will make the change," offensive line coach Jim Turner said on the Bengals Booth Podcast. "At some point a quarterback has to take off and run and he can do that obviously. 

"When you watch his games at LSU last year, he really cleans up a lot of the little dirty stuff in there. You play 70 plays a game as a lineman — you're going to make a couple of mistakes. If each one of them makes two mistakes, that's 10 plays."

Burrow, 23, relied on his athleticism in big moments last season. He moved in the pocket and ran when necessary. 

"When you have a guy that can just make you right a lot of the time, then it really makes a difference in their confidence, their confidence as an individual, [and] their confidence as a unit," Turner continued.

The Bengals offensive line is one of the more inexperienced units in the NFL. Trey Hopkins is steady at center, but there are question marks at the four other spots. 

Bobby Hart and Fred Johnson are expected to compete for the starting right tackle position. Su'a-Filo slides in at right guard. Second-year player Michael Jordan is the favorite to start at left guard and they view Williams as a plug-and-play left tackle. 

The Bengals are banking on their young guys to develop and be much better than they were last season. 

They also believe Burrow's athleticism and playmaking ability will make life easier on their offensive line. 

Listen to Dan Hoard's entire conversation with Turner below. 


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