Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow returned to practice Wednesday wearing a helmet and shoulder pads after missing a month.
His return comes a day after Bengals head coach Zac Taylor hinted that the fourth-year Pro Bowl QB was close to returning.
Taylor said “we’ll see” Tuesday when asked if Burrow would return this week, adding that Burrow only needed “one rep” to be ready for the season, which kicks off Sept. 10. The Bengals play at Cleveland in Week 1.
Burrow’s return comes the same day the team signed quarterback Will Grier to their practice squad after his release by the Dallas Cowboys. Grier was also on the practice field Wednesday.
Burrow hasn’t practiced since getting carted off the field during training camp practice July 27 with a strained calf.
Burrow also missed the 2022 preseason after undergoing an appendectomy, and with some rust apparently not knocked off, he threw four interceptions in the season opener in a home loss against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Burrow, 26, who guided the Bengals to the Super Bowl in his second NFL season in 2021, is also the next quarterback in line for a massive payday.
The Los Angeles Chargers recently made Justin Herbert the new highest-paid player in the NFL at $52.5 million per year (five-year extension worth $262.5 million), following extensions earlier this offseason for the Baltimore Ravens’ Lamar Jackson ($260M) and the Philadelphia Eagles’ Jalen Hurts ($255M).
Grier, 28, becomes QB3 on the Bengals after they released Trevor Siemian. Grier could get called up to the active roster in Week 1 to back up Jake Browning if Burrow isn’t cleared to play. Though that, now, appears unlikely.
The Cowboys reportedly informed Grier he would be released prior to the team’s final preseason game against Las Vegas. He played the entire game, throwing for 305 yards and two touchdowns and rushing for two scores.
Grier became expendable when the Cowboys acquired Trey Lance from San Francisco last week.
Grier was selected in the third round of the 2019 draft by the Carolina Panthers. He started two games — losing both — for the Panthers as a rookie in 2019.
–Field Level Media