Washington Football Team’s Week 11 matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals will feature a faceoff between the first two picks in the 2020 NFL Draft. Both Joe Burrow and Chase Young have lived up to expectations halfway through their rookie seasons, and both will garner serious consideration for Rookie of the Year honors.
“I think Joe Burrow is on pace to be exactly where Cincinnati wants him,” Brian Mitchell said in the latest The Huddle from NBC Sports Washington. “You can see this kid is going to be somebody special in this league, he’s kinda Aaron Rodgers-esque, not saying he’s Aaron Rodgers but he can move around, extend plays and he’s very accurate.”
On a team that has one of the least talented rosters and plays in one of football's toughest divisions, the AFC North, Burrow has played well despite being drafted into a less enviable position than other rookie quarterbacks. Burrow leads all rookies in passing yards, completions and attempts and has also thrown for at least 300 yards in five games this season.
Burrow and the Bengals will be looking to bounce back from a rough outing In Week 10 against the undefeated Pittsburgh Steelers as they travel to face Washington this week.
Based on the team's rankings, it may be a more even matchup than you think. Despite allowing 276 passing yards to Matthew Stafford in their defeat to the Detroit Lions, Washington still has one of the best pass defenses in the league having allowed the fewest yards per game through the air.
A large part of their success is due to the pressure that the No. 2 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, Chase Young, brings on gamedays. Despite only registering 3.5 sacks so far in his rookie campaign, Mitchell believes Young has lived up to the hype of his draft position.
“I think Chase has done terrific in his rookie season, we look for more sacks but I think that’s the problem with us. I think when they get to the level of professional football it’s not all about the sacks it’s about playing a whole football game and I think he’s done a good job thus far.”
Though both Chase Young and Joe Burrow are on struggling teams, seeing the top two picks from this year’s draft square off doesn't happen often. JP Finlay believes that this week we’ll be watching two great young players.
“I agree with B-Mitch. I think Burrow has been really, really good for a young football player. And I think Chase has been really good. I think you’re looking at two guys that are going to have fifteen-year careers and All-Pros and Pro Bowls, and certainly, in this town, you hope playoff games."