Super Bowl LVI Notes: Joe Burrow, Bengals, Rams, Aaron Donald

Joe Burrow

Bengals QB Joe Burrow had a terrific rehab process that enabled him to be on the field for Week 1 this season. But it was clear that he was still shaking off the effects of a catastrophic knee injury in November of his rookie season. Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who performed the surgery on Burrow, said it’s clear the second-year passer is a lot more mobile than he was to start the season. 

“The thing you saw towards November and December was what everybody had seen at LSU — that he could run,” said Dr. ElAttrache via NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport. “The kid could run and evade people and he was elusive. If you watch him on film and see where he was that first game, you notice he got better and better as the season went on. And his throwing was there, he was throwing the ball well, but he started to do more with difficult pass routes as the season went on. That indicates he’s very confident.”

Burrow’s confidence has been on display as one of his super powers in a breakout season and run to the Super Bowl, and Dr. ElAttrache said it factored into his strong rehab as well. 

“Confidence comes into play,” he said. “Because someone’s willingness to jam on that leg and really stick their foot in the turf it takes a mindset.”

Burrow also agrees with that assessment, which was obvious on the field in the AFC title game when he had multiple big third-down conversions on scramble plays. 

“It’s night and day from the first half of the season,” Burrow said this week. “I’m starting to finally feel like myself and able to pull out of some of those tackles when defensive players have me wrapped up in the pocket, and I’m starting to be able to get out of those situations and make some plays.”


Bengals WR coach Troy Walters spoke about the growth that he has seen from WR Ja’Marr Chase during his first year in the NFL. He also added that while Cincinnati has three receivers capable of 1,000 yards, he doesn’t anticipate any issues around sharing the ball. 

“He’s a rare type of guy where success really doesn’t change him. He’s been the same person, even in the preseason when he had all those drops. He hadn’t changed,” Walters said, via “So he doesn’t change whether things are going well or things aren’t going well. . . . Very humble. Very even keel. Tremendous worker. . . . He doesn’t get too high, doesn’t get too low. If he messes up, he’s hard on himself. . . . He wants to correct it. I don’t ever see him getting that big head, becoming a diva. I’m going to stay with him. I let those guys know, even after his 200-yard performance, I let them know the next day that was the past. It’s all about what have you done for me lately. He gets it and he puts the work in.”

Aaron Donald

Rodney Harrison said on the pregame show that Rams DT Aaron Donald told him that he will consider retiring from the NFL if they win the Super Bowl.

“He’s big on legacy,” Harrison said, via Pro Football Talk. “He doesn’t want to be known as a defender that accomplished so many individual things and never won a Super Bowl. But he also told me this: If he wins a Super Bowl, there’s a strong possibility he could walk away from the game and retire.”


  • ESPN’s Adam Schefter notes the Rams are interested in hiring Kentucky OC Liam Coen to potentially replace OC Kevin O’Connell when he leaves to take the Vikings head coaching job. Coen has already worked for the Rams under HC Sean McVay as a QB coach. 
  • Schefter adds Raiders OC Greg Olson is also likely to join the Rams’ offensive coaching staff. He was the QB coach in Los Angeles in 2017. 
  • Along with Olson and Coen, Rams RB coach Thomas Brown is a potential internal candidate to be promoted to offensive coordinator, per Schefter. It’s also worth mentioning that with McVay calling plays, he left the offensive coordinator role vacant on the staff in past seasons before hiring O’Connell in 2020. 
  • Former Rams WR DeSean Jackson is set to earn the same amount as Rams WR Cooper Kupp for a Super Bowl win ($150,000) or a loss ($75,000) due to the fact that he played eight games with the team this season. (Joel Corry)

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