While some rookies will see their snaps curtailed to open the season after the entire offseason program was wiped out and no preseason games will be played due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Joe Burrow will still start from the jump.
Cincinnati Bengals coach Zac Taylor was blunt when asked about the No. 1 overall pick on Wednesday.
"He will walk in and take the first snaps at quarterback and he's prepared for that," Taylor said, via Marisa Contipelli of the team's official website.
Despite the unique offseason, Burrow remains QB1 without challenge. Taylor has hyped the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback all offseason, a trend which continued.
"He's been as advertised," Taylor said of Burrow's preparedness during virtual meetings this offseason.
While some crusty cynics and disparaging detractors will predict pervasive struggles for rookies, especially Burrow, the Bengals believe the rookie can handle being tossed into the fire sans a preseason. At times this offseason Taylor said he's had to rein in the QB during meetings because he's so far ahead of the game.
There is no worry from the Bengals brass he'll be prepared for opening day.
"We have high expectations for Joe. ... He'll put himself in a position to be successful, I trust that," Taylor added.
With Ryan Finley and Jake Dolegala the only other QBs on the roster, there is no surprise Taylor would ride his talented first-round quarterback out of the gate, even in a pandemic-altered year.