CINCINNATI — Joe Burrow spent the deciding moments of the Cincinnati Bengals’ 27-24 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on the sideline Sunday watching Lamar Jackson scramble for a game-clinching first down.
If that wasn’t enough, the Bengals quarterback did so while using a hand massager on his right calf.
“I just tweaked it a little bit again,” Burrow said after the game.
Burrow said the tweak came on his second-to-last play of the day, one before a third-down touchdown pass to Tee Higgins.
He limped toward the sideline after the score and sat down after a brief check-in from the training staff. The game ended with Baltimore taking a knee to conclude the next drive, but Burrow and coach Zac Taylor said after the game the plan was for Burrow to go back in if the Bengals got the ball back.
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That’s as close to a positive report as came out of the postgame news conference where Burrow talked about the tweak and couldn’t offer anything definitive in regards to what comes next regarding the nagging injury he first sustained July 27th.
“We’re gonna have to wait and see,” he said. “I’m not sure how it’s gonna feel the next couple days. It’s pretty sore right now, but no telling how it’s gonna feel. So I think we’re gonna take it day by day.”
Burrow has been listed on the practice report with the calf injury each of the last two weeks, but been a full participant. He has admitted the calf is an issue, stating they were “still managing” it, the calf was “good enough” last week in Cleveland and he admitted there being “good days and bad.”
As for if this feels like one of those bad days?
“It’s tough to tell,” Burrow said. “You have some of those days, but it’s hard to give you guys an answer on that until the next couple days we give it a couple nights, couple sleeps and we’ll see. We’ll go from there.”
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Burrow finished the game 27-of-41 passing for 222 yards with two touchdowns and an interception, finding himself in the second half after only throwing for 35 yards before halftime and 82 yards last week in Cleveland. Yet another victim of the calf injury keeping him out all of August, in his mind.
“When your quarterback misses camp, it’s tough to start fast,” Burrow said. “It’s not an ideal situation.”
While the play on the field represented progress, the question of how long he’ll spend postgame answering questions about this injury could go on for a while. He admitted these things are “always ongoing,” but when asked if he’s worried about having to manage it throughout the season, the answer didn’t involve the word no.
“I don’t know,” he said. “I don’t know. It’s tough to tell. Tough to look into the future and see that. I’m doing everything I can to get healthy and get that thing the way I need it to so I can go out and perform the way I need to, to win. We’ll see.”
(Photo: Andy Lyons / Getty Images)