Communication with his own quarterback now could be a challenge this week while Joe Burrow is on “voice rest” following a throat injury that surfaced after Sunday’s game, causing him to be taken to the hospital as a precaution to be evaluated.
Burrow is practicing as usual this week but was not available to media Wednesday for a second straight time after Sunday’s postgame press conference with him was cancelled. He was released from the hospital Sunday night and is fine to practice, Taylor said, but he is trying to limit how much he is talking to save his voice for when needed most.
Wide receiver Tee Higgins said he still sounds normal in the huddle.
The second-year quarterback will continue to be a key for the Bengals offense, which has gotten off to a slower start this season than most expected with the addition of deep-threat wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase. Taylor said the slow starts come down to not executing consistently, especially on third down.
“We just a more consistent performance across all four quarters,” Taylor said. “I think there’s been some good times where we’ve moved the ball over the course of a half and been productive, but we just need to put it all together and have just a really solid overall performance. Really to pinpoint one area it’s third down. We’ve got to be better third down.”
Higgins said he learned a lot watching the Rams’ 2018 offense on film, and the Bengals need to get back to playing more like that.
“Just the way that their guys was getting open, a lot of the play action and stuff, a lot of the receivers running deep routes -- just seeing that, which is our offense now, we gotta go out there and do what they were doing,” Higgins said. “(It’s good) because if (the defense tries to) double one guy, the other guy’s coming. Just a lot of open voids with this offense.”
Meanwhile, Goff is trying to get things going in similar fashion for the Lions under first-year coach Dan Campbell, who Taylor worked with in Miami during the 2012 through 2015 seasons when Campbell was a tight ends coach and an interim head coach for the Dolphins in 2015. Former Chargers coach Anthony Lynn is calling the offense for the Lions.
Goff has thrown for 1,303 yards and seven touchdowns through five games and has three interceptions. Burrow has passed for 1,296 yards and 11 touchdowns with six interceptions.
“I would say he’s doing a really good job of not turning over the ball,” Bengals free safety Jessie Bates said when asked about Goff. “When the deep shot isn’t there, he’s checking it down to the running back (D’Andre Swift), who is their leading receiver on that team right now. He’s making a lot of good decisions. Their defense is playing really well. He’s done a really good job managing the game, not turning it over and taking the shots when they’re there.”
Bates sees similarities in Detroit’s offense to what Goff did in L.A. and what the Bengals are running now, but thinks the Cincinnati defensive line can be disruptive to the Lions.
Goff has been sacked 14 times, and the Bengals have been better getting pressure on the opposing quarterbacks this year.
“Their offense does a lot of motions and stuff like that, similar to our offense, similar to the L.A. Rams,” Bates said. “I think what Goff is special at is with the “JET” motions and stuff like that, play-actions, he knows where the ball needs to be. I think that’s what makes Goff really special. But he does hold onto the ball a lot and I think our D-line will be able to get after him a little bit.”
Bengals at Lions, 1 p.m., Fox, 700, 1530, 102.7, 104.7