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Joe Burrow Rumors: Bengals Targeting Offseason for 'Big Money' Contract Extension

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 21, 2023

CINCINNATI, OHIO - JANUARY 15: Quarterback Joe Burrow #9 of the Cincinnati Bengals throws a pass against the Baltimore Ravens during the AFC Wild Card playoff game at Paycor Stadium on January 15, 2023 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

The Cincinnati Bengals are expected to lock down quarterback Joe Burrow on a long-term deal this offseason, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network:

Ian Rapoport @RapSheet

From <a href="https://twitter.com/NFLGameDay?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFLGameDay</a>: <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Bengals?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Bengals</a> QB Joe Burrow has been one of the best bargains in the NFL, like all stars on rookie contracts. The organization plans to change that this offseason. <a href="https://t.co/4qPIcbOBRb">pic.twitter.com/4qPIcbOBRb</a>

"My understanding is the Cincinnati Bengals are targeting this offseason for a big-time, big-money extension for Joe Burrow," Rapoport said.

Burrow has an $11.5 million cap hit in 2023 and is eligible for a fifth-year option to keep him under team control through 2024, but the Bengals reportedly don't plan to wait that long to agree an extension. The 2020 No. 1 overall pick totaled 4,475 passing yards this season while ranking second in the NFL with 35 passing touchdowns.

Despite suffering a torn ACL as a rookie, Burrow has been one of the league's best quarterbacks the past two years with 69 passing touchdowns and a 104.2 passer rating. He led the Bengals to the Super Bowl last season, and the team is a top contender again to win it all this year.

It makes signing him to a long-term contract a no-brainer move for Cincinnati, but a deal likely won't come cheap.

Nine quarterbacks currently have contracts that average at least $40 million per year, via Spotrac, including passers who struggled in 2022 like Russell Wilson, Derek Carr and Matthew Stafford. Burrow's deal could surpass each of these contracts as one of the top young players in the sport.

Of course, the team knows there's value in getting a deal done early with prices likely to only grow in the coming years.

Josh Allen signed a six-year extension with the Buffalo Bills after his third NFL season, and he now ranks just sixth in average salary among quarterbacks.

The Bengals must also fit other young players like Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins and Jonah Williams inside the salary cap with new contracts in the coming years, putting pressure on to get a deal done quickly with Burrow.