Quick Hits From Zac: Burrow On Pace; Jonah Staying At LT

Joe Burrow: Zac Taylor says rehab on pace.
Joe Burrow: Zac Taylor says rehab on pace.

Bengals head coach Zac Taylor hasn't seen any video of Joe Burrow running or throwing, but he says the franchise quarterback is on pace during his rehab for a reconstructed knee.

In a virtual call with the Cincinnati press Wednesday, Taylor said Burrow is "on pace to do all the things we're hoping he would do. He's doing really well."

On other topics:

- Although he gave a caveat for offensive lineman needing to be flexible, Taylor gave a vote of confidence to third-year left tackle Jonah Williams staying put.

"I thought he made improvements in the games he got to play," Taylor said. "I'm comfortable with Jonah at left tackle. I think he's really shown improvements there from game to game and we're excited to get him back there at that piece."

- No surprise when Taylor said Williams' offensive line has to be solidified this offseason and he indicated the unit needs stability after using 10 different starting lineups last season.

"If we're going to go where we need to go as an offense, we need five pieces in place to play together and develop that chemistry with one another," Taylor said.

- On a day the NFL announced the salary cap at $182.5 million, about $17 million less than last season, Taylor said the Bengals didn't use the franchise tag on edge rusher Carl Lawson or cornerback William Jackson III in order to retain their flexibility in the hopes they can use their cap space to an advantage when free agency starts next week.

"We're in really good position as few teams are," Taylor said.

He also didn't rule out long-term deals with either player or both: "We have high opinions."

- After being involved in last year's record spending spree Taylor didn't want to make predictions on an encore in this year's free agency. But he likes where they sit with cap room that is rare around the league.

"I don't know if aggressive is the right word," he said of last year. "But I think we're in good position to add quality players."

- On the day the Bengals re-signed back-up quarterback Brandon Allen to give them four quarterbacks under contract, Taylor said he has yet to decide if he'll take three or four quarterbacks to training camp, a decision perhaps resting on roster size. Taylor wouldn't rule out drafting a quarterback and indicated that Ryan Finley, the man that Allen edged to start all but one game in place of Burrow, would be one of those guys.

"We've got some decisions to make," Taylor said. "Brandon is a guy we have a high degree of confidence in, so it was good to get that done."

_In his third season, Taylor is looking for his talented young core to step up beyond the field.

"We've got a lot of good veteran leaders on this team," he said. "It's really going to take shape over this next year where guys' voices become a lit bit louder and guys who are doing things the right way with a ton of talent to back it up, guys are going to listen to them. So I'm excited to see some of the younger guys take that next step and be more vocal next year and help lead some of the other players."

- Taylor wasn't specific about position needs. When it came to wide receiver he admitted, "We have a talented room. Adding another piece is never off the table when you're talking to a guy that calls plays, but we have to do what's best for our team."

- Taylor said the rehabs of running back Joe Mixon (foot) and center Trey Hopkins (ACL) are going well and that Mixon is back to working out.