Dan Orlovsky Labeled Joe Burrow As This Generation's Tom Brady, But Stepped On The Rake In Defending His Take

You won't catch Joe Burrow comparing himself to any quarterback really, much less the unimpeachable GOAT in Tom Brady. But hey, that's one of many reasons why us members of the non-actual-football-playing peanut gallery follow this sport with such fervent passion. To start conversations like this.

There's always an obsession with who's NEXT. Or nowadays, who's HIM. In the opinion of former NFL QB Dan Orlovsky, Joey B is the closest thing to TB12 we'll see in the coming years. Many of the mainstream breakdowns of Burrow are borderline offensive and insulting. I tend to like Orlovsky's more favorable review and better thought-out opinion, yet even his take could be more nuanced and less skewed toward what Joe Brrr can't do:

"Joe's at his best when he [needs] it the most. I think that’s why the correlation between the two guys happens…They don't necessarily to our eyes at fans have some of these traits that we just go, indescribably, 'How does that happen?' But, and Joe said it, everything that is [sic] the most important, they do it their absolute best, not only in that way but also when it's needed the most. So I think it’s pretty fair."

Dan Orlovsky, I thought you'd be different. I thought you'd actually articulate your appreciation and respect Joe Burrow's physical tools and go out of your way to do so. Alas...


Giphy Images.

Nope. Here we are again talking about how unspectacular Joe Burrow is for some reason.

The young star QBs Orlovsky brings up when comparing certain freakish skill sets are usual suspects Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen and Justin Herbert. What's said here is that Burrow isn't as physically spectacular as either of those three, but he nevertheless still delivers the goods as a pure, clutch field general.

I think part of the reason some haters want to write Joe Cool off is because he doesn't have the pure arm strength these guys do. Every year the draft rolls around, it's about finding the NEXT one of those guys. Burrow is kind of cursed in that respect. He has plenty of arm, elite accuracy and now that his knee is fully healed from getting blown out in 2020, he's showing more and more how effective he can be as an athlete. The problem is, it just so happens he plays in an era with the aforementioned trio who have, literally, generational/all-time rocket arms. Allen is also capable of plowing over defenders.

But here's the thing: Mahomes is a mechanical nightmare who's still learning to process and play from the pocket without bailing and creating pressure he's responsible for. We've seen the sharp decline of Russell Wilson for deploying a far more extreme version of that style. It's part of Mahomes' magic and you don't want to take that away. At the same time, he's not as disciplined as Burrow, whose ability to create outside of structure is, again, underrated when you see some of the bonkers throws Mahomes puts on tape.

Then you have Allen, a far worse decision-maker who leads all QBs with 24 turnover-worthy plays in 2022, per PFF. The Bills cybernetic freak show doesn't know how not to take huge hits as a ball-carrier, either. Despite how massive he is, doesn't bode well for his longevity.

Orlovsky distinguishes Brady from great players of his era by saying it was more about what he accomplished than how he accomplished it. I contend Burrow is a far more exciting watch, and doesn't exactly pale in comparison to Mahomes/Allen/Herbert in that regard. In fact, the Chargers hold Herbert back if anything and he seems to lack the franchise QB finesse to speak up or do anything about it. Meanwhile, the Bengals have given their third-year signal-caller plenty of say over the offense.


I've spoken on this before: Joe is so advanced when it comes to reading coverages that he can technically throw it to the "wrong" read based on the look the defense is giving, yet still get an explosive/chunk play through the air because he takes a shot based on the leverage his receivers are being played with. That's how much trust and chemistry he's built with his pass-catchers.

That's how you can start a season 0-2 coming off a burst appendix and still bounce back to this degree even while your favorite target Ja'Marr Chase misses multiple games and you see injuries to your starting tailback Joe Mixon:

The Bengals haven't even played anywhere close to a complete game in their past two wins over the Chiefs and Browns. They should still have room to improve as December moves into the playoffs, which the rest of the AFC can't be thrilled about.

NORMALIZE the "Joe Burrow is so much fun to watch play football and actually is athletic as fuck" take. At least Orlovsky didn't pretend like Joe is only a pocket passer and make an oversimplified comparison to the lead-footed Brady in that regard.

Sunday will see Tampa Tom host Burrow in a late afternoon kickoff, on the heels of a couple bad losses and a miraculous one-point win among their latest three outings. Joe has Cincinnati completely locked in, so even with the possibility of a letdown spot and the perpetual threat of the Bucs waking up from their season-long slumber at any point, I trust that once again, our guy Burrow will be at his best if and when his number is called upon to outduel Tom Terrific.

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