When the 2020 NFL schedule was first released in May, Washington first-round rookie Chase Young cited the Cincinnati Bengals as the team he was looking forward to playing against the most.
It's not hard to infer as to why.
For starters, Cincinnati was the only team to pass on the pass rusher in the draft. But, more likely the reason why Young has had Washington's Week 11 date with the Bengals circled on his calendar for months is because of the chance to face Joe Burrow, Young's old college teammate and the only player picked ahead of Young on draft night.
Speaking with local media on Thursday, Young raved about the player Burrow has become.
"I know a lot about Burrow. He's a good guy, a hard worker," Young said. "He's turned out to be a great player."
Burrow is best known for his Heisman Trophy season with LSU last fall, but the quarterback's college career began at Ohio State. Burrow spent two seasons as Young's teammate in Columbus, and they faced one another plenty during practice.
Although Burrow was never the starting quarterback for the Buckeyes, Young saw the quarterback's tremendous leadership ability on display while they shared a locker room. That's something that has really stuck with the pass rusher when looking back on his time as Burrow's teammate.
"Joe was a real good leader. He led by example," Young said. "He was always real composed in everything he did."
That leadership certainly carried over to Baton Rouge, where Burrow became the face of LSU's program during their undefeated title-winning season.
That quality has translated to the professional level, too, as Burrow was named a team captain for Cincinnati ahead of ever playing an NFL snap.
"He's definitely a guy you want leading your team for sure," Young said. "I feel like he's proved that this year."
Being back-to-back selections to begin the 2020 draft, Burrow and Young both entered the NFL with lofty expectations. So far, they've been nearly as good as advertised. And Sunday, they'll face one another for the first time as professionals. It almost certainly won't be the last.