The Cincinnati Bengals have one of the top records in the AFC after taking down the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.
The game was not particularly close as Joe Burrow and company cruised to a 41-10 AFC North victory.
Cincinnati thus swept the season-series over Pittsburgh and is right there with the Baltimore Ravens in the race to win the division.
Burrow was asked after the win what he thought it meant to sweep the Steelers.
His answer was a bit literal, but proved the larger goals in mind for his Bengals.
Joe Burrow: “It means we’re 2-0 against them. We have higher aspirations than beating the Steelers.”
“We can’t let up now.” #Bengals
— Jeremy Rauch (@FOX19Jeremy) November 28, 2021
“We have higher aspirations than beating the Steelers” is a tough quote for fans in Pittsburgh to read given the opposite directions in which these two teams are headed.
But Bengals fans will love this mindset as Burrow has greater goals in mind than regular season wins.
The Goal In Mind
Burrow was taken No. 1 overall by the Bengals in 2020 to make the team a contender again.
Even winning a playoff game would be a huge step forward for the franchise.
The Bengals have not been to the postseason since 2015.
That marked the fifth year in a row the team fell in the Wild Card round of the playoffs under Marvin Lewis.
Going back even further, the Bengals have not won a postseason game since 1990.
That is a shocking amount of time and proves how desperate the Bengals are to end this streak in 2021.
Credit to Joe Burrow. Not sure how many QBs would be willing to lock horns with Trent Jordan Watt like this. pic.twitter.com/lRMkTlOPOh
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) November 28, 2021
It also explains why Burrow is not jumping up and down after sweeping the Steelers.
He was a national champion at LSU and knows the history of his current employer.
That includes the five-year stretch where getting into the playoffs resulted in early exit after early exit.
Winning games in the division is a great first step toward a return to contention.
Burrow needs to take his own focus and make sure it spreads throughout the locker room as the Bengals look to end several painful streaks this season.