Bengals QB Joe Burrow makes return from knee injury, but doesn't play much

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It wasn't much, but Joe Burrow had to feel good to be back taking snaps during a game. 

In Sunday's preseason finale against the Miami Dolphins, Burrow took the field for the first time since suffering a season-ending injury last season. Burrow hadn't played since suffering a severe knee injury including a torn ACL last Nov. 22. The Bengals held him out of the first two preseason games. On Sunday Burrow came out to a standing ovation in front of the home fans. 

Burrow played just three snaps. That was the plan. But it was something, however brief. 

Joe Burrow makes his return

The CBS crew reported that Bengals coach Zac Taylor said Burrow would play only three plays.

On his first snap, Burrow handed off on a jet sweep to Tyler Boyd. On the second he faked a handoff and threw a receiver screen to first-round pick Ja'Marr Chase, who dropped it (drops have been a problem for Chase all month). On play three Burrow handed off to Joe Mixon. Then he came out of the game and his day was over.  

His return wasn't exciting, but Burrow wanted some preseason action before Week 1. 

"I’ve been lobbying. Just saying what plays I might like against Miami, third downs, first couple plays. Just throw some plays out there and put them in their [the coaches'] head," Burrow said via SI.com "I think it [playing] would help, however many plays I would get I think it would help."

At least his first snaps back won't be in the season opener. 

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow took a few snaps on Sunday. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow took a few snaps on Sunday. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)

Burrow will be starting Week 1

Burrow, the No. 1 overall pick last season, was having a good rookie year before he got injured. The injury was significant, and there have been questions about his return. 

Early in camp, reports said Burrow looked a bit tentative. Those reports have turned more positive in recent weeks. If Burrow is healthy, he has plenty of exciting players around him. The Bengals could be one of the more interesting teams in the league to watch. 

They key to the Bengals' season is Burrow. To see him back on the field at all, even for three snaps, was pretty good news before the preseason ended. 

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