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Joe Burrow’s stats: How the Bengals QB’s historic two-game streak made him an MVP candidate

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Joe Burrow’s stats: How the Bengals QB’s historic two-game streak made him an MVP candidate

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Joe Burrow did everything in his power this season to take the Bengals to the AFC North title.

Burrow’s entire campaign had been an impressive turnaround after he tore the ACL and MCL in his left knee during his rookie season, which helped make him a solid case for the returning player from the year.

But in the last two games he’s played, clashes against rival AFC North Ravens and the last two AFC champions, the Chiefs, Burrow has taken his game to another level. He passed for nearly 1,000 yards and had four touchdowns in each game, handing Cincinnati wins in each to clinch the division title and giving starters a day off in Week 18.

What does this mean for the Bengals and where does it rank in history? Sporting News breaks it down.

Joe Burrow’s Stats

After a win over the Broncos in Week 15, the Bengals needed to beat the Ravens, a loss to the Browns and a win in at least one more game in the streak in order to finish the season as AFC North champions. .

Even before Cincinnati took the field in Week 16, the Browns lost to the Packers on Christmas Day, meaning the Bengals only had to beat Baltimore and win one more game the rest of the season. year to be crowned champions. That game, Burrow had the best numbers of his career, passing for 525 yards and four touchdowns with an 80.4 completion percentage against a battered Ravens team to blow up Baltimore and win 41-21. It was a single-game assists record for Cincinnati and fourth in a single game in NFL history.

Somehow, Burrow managed to find a way to improve the performance. Playing against a stronger opponent and healthier defense in Kansas City, Burrow completed 76.9% of his passes for 446 yards with four more touchdowns to help lead the Bengals to a 34-31 victory, winning the championship crown. division and sending Cincinnati to the playoffs for the first time since 2015.

The final two games concluded what was a remarkable sophomore campaign for Burrow. He finished the season with a 70.4 percent completion percentage, 4,611 passing yards, 34 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions. Cincinnati’s passing yards and passing touchdowns were the highest in a single season in franchise history, while his completion percentage was the best among NFL qualified QBs in 2021.

He also ranked sixth in passing yards and eighth in passing touchdowns in the NFL, and he led the league with 8.9 yards per attempt.

Pro Football Focus ranked him the second-best QB in the league by offensive production (91.7) and No. 1 by pure passing rating (91.2).

Most passing yards in two consecutive games

In those final two games of the season, Burrow collectively passed for 971 yards with eight touchdowns, a 78.8 percent completion percentage and no interceptions.

The game brought him in rare company and nearly broke the record for most passing yards in consecutive games.

Player Team Year Weeks overtaking course
Dak Prescott the cowboys 2020 3-4 974
Joe Terrier Bengals 2021 16-17 971
Phil Sims giants 1985 5-6 945
Tom brady Patriots 2011 1-2 940
Dak Prescott the cowboys 2020 2-3 922

First, Dak Prescott was on another level to start 2020 (1,424 passing yards in three games is an impressive run). But another aspect that makes Burrow’s performance all the more impressive is that unlike other QBs, his came at the end of the season with his team needing wins to reach the playoffs, while the others are came earlier in the season.

What adds to the impressiveness is how complete the games were by Burrow. The Bengals QB is one of only three quarterbacks to win multiple games for 400+ passing yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions in a game, joining Peyton Manning in 2013 and Jared Goff in 2018. He is the only QB to have multiples where he also completed at least 70% of his passes in every game.

It gets tough, but it underscores the precision Burrow has shown this season. There are games where quarterbacks come in to play catch-up or just aim for a weak pass defense, but sustaining a 70% completion percentage is tough. He did it in two games where he also threw for over 400 yards.

Joe Burrow for MVP?

So does Burrow have a case for MVP? Certainly.

FanDuel Sportsbook currently lists Burrow as having the third best odds of winning MVP (+2500), albeit well behind Aaron Rodgers (-500) and Tom Brady (+400).

Burrow’s season has brought him in rare company. Only 20 quarterbacks in NFL history have had a season in which they passed for at least 8.5 yards per attempt and completed 30 touchdowns, according to Stathead. Nine of those campaigns ended with the QB winning MVP. Seven of those quarterbacks are in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Among the names not in the Hall of Fame are Brady, Rodgers, Drew Brees, Patrick Mahomes and Philip Rivers.

Obviously, Rodgers and Brady will be tough to pass. Rodgers led the NFL in quarterback standings and threw the fewest interceptions (four) and fourth-most touchdowns (37), as well as 4,115 passing yards. Brady led the league in passing yards (5,316) and passing touchdowns (43).

But don’t count Burrow out of the race. He transformed Cincinnati from the fifth-worst team in the NFL to a division champion. Not to mention, repeat MVPs are rare, as the last player to achieve the feat was Peyton Manning in 2008 and 2009.

On Saturday, Burrow will be looking to make a statement and give the Bengals their first playoff victory since 1991, when they face the Raiders at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Joe Burrow’s stats: How the Bengals QB’s historic two-game streak made him an MVP candidate

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