D.J. Reader says Joe Burrow vs. Drew Lock was why he chose Bengals over Broncos

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Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle D.J. Reader says one look at the quarterback situation helped him make his big free-agent decision two offseasons ago.

Reader, who inked a four-year deal worth $53 million with the Bengals in 2020, apparently had an offer from the Broncos as well. But he stepped back, compared Joe Burrow to Drew Lock and put in a call with his agent.

“My agent was like, your options are, who are you going to be on, Joe Burrow or Drew Lock?” Reader said, according to Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com. “I was like, I really think I’m going to go with Joe Burrow, Joey B. I like what they’ve got going on, I’m excited. That’s really what it came down ”

Reader then expanded on what he’s seen from Burrow so far:

“We know how good Joe is. This training camp was intense. A lot of emotion, a lot of junk talking. A lot of things going on and he was being aggressive. We know what Joe is made of. It’s exciting for us to watch the world see what Joe is made of. You’re not over there on third down waiting to grab your helmet. You’re sitting there waiting on him to make a play. That’s exciting as a defensive player knowing that you have somebody with the ball in their hands that can do something like that.”

That’s another way of saying Reader knows he made the right choice. His first year, another rebuilding session for the Bengals, was cut short due to injury.

But this year? He’s sitting on a 3-1 squad with a player like Burrow who has looked improved compared to last year despite coming back from an injury and having yet to play in a full 16 pro games.

Out in Denver, the Broncos are also 3-1, but it’s veteran passer Teddy Bridgewater, not Lock, getting the nod as starter.

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