The Cincinnati Bengals have been one of the most pleasant surprises through almost the first quarter of the 2021 NFL season. Former No. 1 overall Joe Burrow has led the team to a 3-1 start in his second year at quarterback and even earned AFC offensive player of the week honors for his Week 4 performance against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
However, the Bengals got off to a tepid start in last Thursday’s win over the Jaguars and needed to battle back from a 14-0 halftime deficit to come out on top. Burrow was masterful in the second half and ended the win with 348 yards and two touchdowns, but he wasn’t satisfied with how his team began the game.
Headed into this Sunday’s match-up with the 3-1 Green Bay Packers, the Bengals will need to play much better for all four quarters to walk away with the win. Burrow recognized exactly that and expressed the importance of getting out a fast start.
“We can’t start slow the way we did last week,” Burrow said Wednesday, via Kelsey Conway of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “If we start slow like that, we’ll be down 21-0 before we can blink. So, we’re gonna have to come out fast.”
The #Bengals have scored one touchdown in 4 first quarters. In order to keep pace with Aaron Rodgers and beat the Packers, that'll have to change.
"If we start slow like that, we'll be down 21-0 before we can blink." – Joe Burrow https://t.co/0GOs03BTpz
— Kelsey Conway (@KelseyLConway) October 7, 2021
The Packers got off to their own slow start in Week 1 of the 2021 season, when they were completely dismantled by the New Orleans Saints. Since then, they’ve looked like a completely different team and have rattled off three straight wins to take over an early division lead.
The Bengals will face the tough task of keeping up with a Packers offense that’s scored 35, 30, and 27 points in its last three games. Although Sunday’s game won’t be easy, Burrow and the rest of the Cincinnati offense is looking forward to the challenge.
“We’re excited to play this game,” Burrow said. “They’re a really good team, have been for a really long time. They’re coming in here and we’re gonna have to be ready to play. They’re not going to roll over and let us beat them. They’re gonna make us beat them. They’re not gonna lose the game, that’s for sure.”
Bengals vs. Packers will get underway at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday in Cincinnati.