Joe Burrow remains day-to-day as Bengals continue to monitor QB

CINCINNATI -- Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow remains day-to-day with a right calf injury, coach Zac Taylor said Thursday.

Burrow officially did not practice, and his status remains uncertain for the Monday night game against the Los Angeles Rams. Whether Burrow will be on the field could be out of his control as he deals with the calf issue.

"That may not be my decision to make," Burrow said after practice. "My job is to go out and play. That's what I'm preparing to do."

Before practice officially started, Burrow took snaps from starting center Ted Karras, chatted with teammates and took part in stretching.

But when the Bengals broke for individual drills during the open period, backup quarterback Jake Browning and practice squad quarterback Will Grier threw passes while Burrow stood next to offensive coordinator Brian Callahan.

Grier, however, is now leaving the Bengals' organization to sign to the New England Patriots' active roster, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter. Grier's departure means that the Bengals currently don't have a backup quarterback on their roster or practice squad if Burrow can't play on Monday night.

Burrow said he wore a compression sleeve on his right leg to limit swelling. Although he didn't know how much he would do this week, Burrow did outline the checklist in order for him to play against the Rams.

"You have to practice one day," he said. "Maybe not full, but you've got to be running around throwing the ball. You just have to feel confident in your ability to go out and do the job."

On Cincinnati's final offensive drive of the Week 2 loss against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, Burrow reinjured the calf he strained at the beginning of training camp. The injury prevented him from being a full participant at practice for roughly six weeks, but he still played in the season opener, a 24-3 loss to the Cleveland Browns.

Cincinnati is looking to give Burrow as much time as he needs for his injured calf to feel healthy enough to play.

"Soreness is an issue right now, so giving him some time is best," Taylor said before practice. "That's all I'll say about today."

Taylor said it would be ideal if Burrow could practice ahead of Monday if he were to play. As for concern about his workload given the quarterback's soreness, Taylor said that will be something to monitor throughout the week. If Burrow can't play, Browning is in line to make the start.

Browning, 27, initially signed with the Bengals as a practice squad player in 2021 and entered this season in the mix to be Burrow's primary backup. He ultimately won the job, beating out veteran Trevor Siemian, who was cut after signing a one-year deal with the team in free agency.

Browning said even when he was on the practice squad, he went through the game plan each week as if he was going to be the No. 2 option behind Burrow.

"It's kind of my job to be ready if Joe goes down," Browning said. "I'm going into my third week of doing that."

The Bengals (0-2) are looking to avoid dropping three straight games for the first time since Burrow's rookie season in 2020. Cincinnati has dropped two straight games on three different occasions over the past two seasons, including at the beginning of 2022, but the Bengals have responded with a win in each instance and finished each season by winning the AFC North and reaching at least the AFC Championship Game.

None of the Bengals players put a lot of stock in the Super Bowl LVI rematch against the Rams. Burrow said that both teams are vastly different from when they met in February 2022.

But Burrow said that the Bengals' slow start and the sense of urgency to find a win quickly isn't lost on him as he prepares for this week.

"It's in my head for sure," he said. "I'm thinking about it."