Joe Burrow Gunning To Start 2021 Season ... After Devastating ACL, MCL Injury

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SEE YOU WEEK ONE
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Awesome news for Bengals fans -- star quarterback Joe Burrow says he fully intends to be ready for the start of 2021 ... less than 2 months after going down with a season-ending injury!!

Remember, #9 suffered a torn ACL, MCL and other knee damage in the 3rd quarter of Cincinnati's Nov. 22 matchup against the Washington Football Team ... officially ending his rookie campaign.

Joey B gave an update on his status in an interview with Colin Cowherd on FS1 on Thursday ... admitting he's making strides in recovery.

"Rehab has gone really well," 24-year-old Burrow said. "I'm past the worst part. I'm starting to feel like a normal human again. I can walk around, put my clothes on, do what I need to do."

ON THE MOVE

But, it wasn't always smooth sailing for the Heisman winner ... he admits, "The first week and a half, 2 weeks was pretty miserable. You need help doing everything but I'm getting more independent and it's gonna be nice to get some alone time."

Of course, Burrow was putting together a solid rookie season before the injury ... racking up 2,688 yards, 13 TDs and just 5 interceptions.

While Burrow's return date is still TBD, it's clear the young signal-caller isn't expecting to miss any games in 2021.

"I think I'll be ready," he said. "I think I'll be just fine."

Shannon Sharpe Clowns JuJu Smith-Schuster You Can't TikTok And Lose!!!

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Shannon Sharpe rubbed some serious salt into the Steelers' wounds Monday night ... clowning the hell out of JuJu Smith-Schuster for TikToking and then losing to the Bengals!!!

If you haven't seen it, the Pittsburgh star wideout has gained fame for doing TikTok dances on opponents' logos over the past few weeks.

But, seemingly every time he does it -- his team gets whooped ... and Monday night was no different.

Just a couple hours after JuJu grooved to Popp Hunna's "Adderall (Corvette Corvette)" at Cincy's midfield ... PIT took one of the worst losses of the NFL season this year, falling 27-17 to the 3-10-1 Bengals.

And, to make matters worse for JuJu, he got LIT UP during the game -- fumbling a ball that ended up costing the Steelers big time.

Enter Sharpe ... who was so clearly delighted to see JuJu stink it up after dancing on the logo -- he took to Twitter to straight-up clown the 24-year-old!!

"Ju Ju might need a new car," Sharpe said. "That corvette, corvette isn’t fast enough to get away anymore."

Sharpe later added, "Sent corvette,corvette to the body shop tonite. Don’t TikTok on the logo."

To make matters even worse for JuJu? The Bengals got in on the dancing shade too!!!

Smith-Schuster has been adamant he won't change his pregame routine despite the negative attention ... but, man, giving it a break for at least ONE week seems like a good idea here.

NFL's Carlos Dunlap Removes Bengals Parking Spot After Trade To Seahawks

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MOVIN' OUT

Hey, Joe Burrow ... need a better parking spot?? One just opened up for ya!!

NFL star DE Carlos Dunlap is no longer a Cincinnati Bengal ... making the move official by removing his reserved spot at the team facility parking lot on Wednesday.

It was no secret -- Dunlap wanted the hell outta the Queen City ... from shouting matches with coaches, to tweeting about his house being for sale to cryptic Instagram captions.

The 31-year-old finally got his wish by being traded to the Seattle Seahawks just hours ago ... and reflected on his time with the Bengals while taking down his parking lot sign in an IG video.

"Took me years to earn this parking spot and I don't regret not one of them," Dunlap said Wednesday. "years = a decade of service."

It's gotta be a bittersweet moment for Dunlap to leave his first NFL home -- he was a beast on the Bengals D and made 2 Pro Bowls since 2010 ... but Cincy is god-awful this season and he was clearly frustrated.

Now, he joins a 5-1 'Hawks team that's currently leading the NFC West.

Something tells us he'll get over it rather quickly.

NFL's Mackensie Alexander Arrested After Leaving Camp ... To Search For Missing Dad

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11:10 AM PT -- In 911 audio of the alleged incident obtained by TMZ Sports ... the caller tells dispatch the whole altercation was related to Alexander's father's "disappearance."

"Someone went missing," the caller says, "and [the alleged victim] was with the guy and now they're telling him like, 'Where's the guy?' and all that."

REPORTING THE INCIDENT

The caller, who ID'd himself as the alleged victim's son, claimed he was on the phone with his father when he heard two guys arguing and roughing him up.

The caller says he could hear his dad saying, "Why are you hitting me" and "stuff like that" ... adding he believed his dad was "in trouble."

10:10 AM PT -- Police say Mackensie Alexander and another man beat the hell out of a guy on Tuesday ... and cops say it all started because the men confronted the alleged victim about "an incident that had transpired the day prior."

In police documents, obtained by TMZ Sports, cops say Alexander and Evins Clement showed up to an Immokalee, FL residence to interrogate a man about a "prior incident."

FYI -- cops did NOT reveal what the alleged incident was nor did they confirm the identity of the alleged victim. But, it looks like the altercation could be connected to Alexander's father's disappearance.

In the docs, cops say Alexander and Clement tried to get the man to leave with them in their car ... but they say the man refused, "due to fear of retaliation from the prior incident."

Officers say that's when Alexander "threatened the victim that he had a firearm in his vehicle if the victim continued to refuse to go with them."

Cops say when the alleged victim continued to refuse ... they say Clement grabbed the man and held him down while Alexander punched him with a closed fist in the face repeatedly.

Officers say both Alexander and Clement then fled the scene when they heard cops' sirens approaching.

Cops add in the report the alleged victim "had a noticeable injury to his lip and forehead."

Both Clement and Alexander were eventually arrested ... with the two each being booked on misdemeanor battery charges.

In a statement released Wednesday, a spokesperson for the Collier County Sheriff's Office said, "We recognize that this is an emotional and frightening time for the family and friends of [Alexander's father] Jean Odney Alexandre."

"However, everyone must act within the law."

6:15 AM PT -- 8/26 -- Alexander was arrested shortly after leaving Bengals camp to search for his missing father ... TMZ Sports has confirmed.

Jail records show the NFL player was booked on 1 count of battery on Tuesday.

Unclear the details of the arrest -- we're working on it -- but NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports, "My understanding is he allegedly confronted the man who left behind his father, Jean Odney Alexandre, on a berry-picking trip."

Cincinnati Bengals CB Mackensie Alexander has left training camp to help police search for his missing father, this according to reports.

Mackensie's dad, 65-year-old Jean Odney Alexandre went missing Monday after a palmetto berry picking trip in Okeechobee County, FL.

The Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office says Jean went on the trip with another man ... who ended up leaving the prairie without Alexandre.

Jean was reported missing late Monday night ... and law enforcement launched a search mission using K-9's, 4 wheelers and helicopters.

26-year-old Alexander -- a 2nd-round draft pick out of Clemson in 2016 -- bolted training camp in Cincinnati to join the search, according to Tom Pelissero.

Originally Published 8/25 5:06 PM PT

Joe Burrow Gets Sick Diamond #9 Chain ... 18K Gold!!!

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JOEY ICE
@LeoFrost

Cincinnati Bengals rookie quarterback Joe Burrow just got himself an amazing welcome-to-the-NFL gift ... a diamond chain of his jersey number!!

TMZ Sports has learned ... the Heisman Trophy winner wanted to do something special after inking his massive, $36 million rookie deal, so he hit up celeb jeweler Leo Frost to whip up the one-of-a-kind piece.

We're told the awesome #9 pendant is made of 18k white gold and VVS diamonds ... sitting on an 18k white gold prong-set Cuban chain with VVS diamonds.

In other words, the rook's got taste!!

For those who paid close attention to our pre-draft jewelry roundup back in February, this should come as no surprise. As Leo told Burrow at the time, "After the draft, I'm thinking we make this a fat ass piece for you, #9? A fat #9."

Leo delivered on his promise ... flying to Cincinnati this week to hand over the final product ... and Joe loved it!!

It's been one crazy year for the Ohio boy -- he won a natty, won the Heisman, helped raise $500k for his hometown food bank, and went #1 overall in the Draft.

So yeah ... the dude earned some ice.

Pacman Jones Makes Peace with Joe Haden Suspects Joey Porter In Jersey Prank

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JOKE'S ON THEM
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Pacman Jones tells TMZ Sports he spoke with Joe Haden and no longer believes the Steelers star orchestrated the jersey prank that resulted in a bonfire.

But, Pacman DOES suspect it was another Steelers legend who concocted the plan ... Joey Porter!

Pacman says he initially attacked Haden because his "instinct" led him to believe the DB was behind the prank.

FIRED UP

But, the two men talked it out ... and he believes Haden is telling the truth -- that he had nothing to do with shipping the box of autographed Steelers jerseys to Pacman's crib.

"I don't think Joe sent them after I talked to Joe -- so, I don't have no problem with Joe," Pacman says.

"But, I do think somebody over there in that ballpark or whatever they doing over there, Sh*ttsburgh, that somebody from over there sent them. I wouldn't even be surprised if Joey Porter sent them."

Ya gotta watch the video -- Pacman says Haden's agent Drew Rosenhaus tried to play peacemaker, but Pacman hates Drew so it didn't work out.

"I'm not a big fan of Drew. I have no problem with Joe. For all I care, Drew can go f*ck himself for what it's worth to me."

We asked Pacman if he's still harboring a beef with the Pittsburgh Steelers over the intense rivalry from his days with the Cincinnati Bengals ... and his answer -- well, WATCH!

"I don't give two f*cks about nothing that's going on in Pittsburgh. I'm riding and dying about what I believe in and what I stand for and Pittsburgh have nothing that I believe in or stand for."

"I gives a f*ck about anything that's going on in Pittsburgh."

There's more ... Pacman recently launched a new CBD and THC company called PAC24 to help with pain relief -- and says the weed helped him get off potentially dangerous painkillers after years of football-related injuries.

I MEAN BUSINESS
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NFL's John Ross Leaves Bengals Training Camp After 3-Year-Old Son Tests Positive For COVID

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Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver John Ross III has left training camp to take care of his son ... after his 3-year-old and the child's mother both tested positive for coronavirus.

Ross did not attend practice on Tuesday as he flew back to Los Angeles to help care for his family, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero.

The timing isn't exactly ideal for the 24-year-old speedster --he's been hoping to have a breakout season with Cincy after 3 injury-plagued years in the league.

Ross was selected with the 9th overall pick in the 2017 Draft after flashing some insane speed. He's shown real potential on the field but injuries have been a problem.

Waiting for your permission to load the Instagram Media.

He will now be placed on the Bengals' Reserve/COVID-19 list ... and a return date has not been set.

Ross frequently posts on social media his son, Juju -- and raves about how much he loves being a father.

Story developing ...

Bengals' Joe Burrow Finally Signs Big Rookie Contract ... 36 Mil Reasons to Smile!!!

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"I signed a paper today."

Understatement of the century from Joe Burrow -- who just officially signed his huge $36 MILLION rookie contract with the Bengals!

You excited yet, Cincy?!

Burrow was the #1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft back in April -- but it took a while for the 2 sides to hammer out the contract details.

The good news ... the Bengals say the deal is done -- which means the 23-year-old LSU hero is less than 15 days away from getting that $23.9 million signing bonus!

Moments after the signing, the team released a video showing Burrow walking through the team facility -- noting the QB is already "ready to work!"

(Side note -- someone get that dude a mask already!!!)

Burrow is expected to take over the starting QB role for Cincy, which just parted ways with longtime QB Andy Dalton.

Brett Favre said Burrow's 2019 college football campaign was one of the best seasons he's ever seen -- with Burrow completing 76.3% of his passes for 5,671 yards and scoring 65 total (rushing and passing) TDs.

Cincy fans are praying his skills translate to the NFL immediately -- but ey, no pressure, right?!

Congrats on becoming super-rich, Joey!!!

Joe Burrow Launches Hunger Relief Foundation ... $700k Invested So Far

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Joe Burrow said he was gonna do it ... and now he's doing it in a BIG way.

The Cincinnati Bengals QB -- whose Heisman acceptance speech sparked more than $650k to his hometown's food pantry -- is taking things to the next level ... by starting a foundation to fight hunger and poverty in southeast Ohio.

Waiting for your permission to load the Instagram Media.

Remember, TMZ Sports spoke with Burrow back in December (shortly after he accepted his Heisman) and he told us he was already planning on ways to use his platform to help.

That resulted in #9 announcing the "Joe Burrow Hunger Relief Fund" on Thursday ... which will keep food on the tables in his hometown of The Plains for years to come.

DECEMBER 2019
HELPIN' HANDS
TMZSports.com

"When I mentioned my hometown in my Heisman speech, it wasn't really planned. I was just speaking from the heart," the 23-year-old QB said in the announcement.

The fund was kick-started with $350k of the money raised from the Heisman speech and a matched donation from the Foundation For Appalachian Ohio ... bringing the total to a $700k investment in the future.

"This initiative was made possible through the generosity of people from all over the country, and will have a tremendous effect on the food insecurity issues that many families face in Southeast Ohio."

"I'ma work as hard as I can to make you guys proud of me. Make the entire state of Ohio proud."

Joe Burrow 'Black Community Needs Our Help' In Wake of George Floyd Killing

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Joe Burrow -- the #1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft -- is speaking out about the civil unrest following the killing of George Floyd ... saying, "The black community needs our help."

The "our" is presumably white people -- considering Burrow is white -- but it's possible the 23-year-old is referring to EVERYONE outside of the black community.

Nonetheless, the Cincinnati Bengals QB expanded on his point.

"They have been unheard for far too long. Open your ears, listen, and speak. This isn’t politics. This is human rights."

Burrow has spoken out about racial issues in the past -- in 2019 he made some strong comments following controversial tweets from President Trump when POTUS told 4 U.S. Congresswomen to "go back" to their home countries.

"Why does racial inequality have to be political? It’s basic human decency," Burrow told Sports Illustrated at the time.

Other NFL players have spoken out about the current situation -- including Philadelphia Eagles QB Carson Wentz.

"Been thinking about the George Floyd situation and thinking of the words to say [and] coming up empty," Wentz said.

"All I know is that the institutional racism in this country breaks my heart and needs to stop. Can’t even fathom what the black community has to endure on a daily basis."

Chad Ochocinco Drops $1,000 Tip at Florida Restaurant ... 'Hope This Helps'!!!

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What's the appropriate amount to tip on a $37 check?

HOW ABOUT ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS?!!!

That's the kind of math Chad Ochocinco is all about -- and he proved it Monday, by dropping a killer tip at one of his favorite restaurants.

The ex-NFL wideout popped by Havana's restaurant near Ft. Lauderdale -- which recently reopened amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Not only did Chad order up some delicious grub, but man -- he blessed the good people with a some serious tippage!

"Congrats on reopening, sorry about the pandemic, hope this helps," Ochocinco wrote on the bill ... "I love you!"

The restaurant staff felt the love and publicly shouted out the former Cincinnati Bengals star on social media.

"We would like to thank Chad 'Ocho Cinco' Johnson for his continued patronage."

"We greatly appreciate your generosity to our employees now during these most difficult times. Many blessings to you and your family. Thank you again!"

We know what you're thinking -- how rich is that dude? Johnson reportedly made close to $50 mil during his 11 year NFL career ... but he's famously thrifty with his cash.

... but hey, it's good to make an exception once in a while!

Props to Chad!

Nike Changes Course On Burrow Draft Shirt ... Just Sell It!!!

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The fans wanted it ... and Nike listened!!

The epic "740" area code shirt Joe Burrow wore during the NFL Draft is hitting the market ... this, after Nike initially said it wouldn't see the light of day, TMZ Sports has learned.

Remember, we reached out to the Swoosh shortly after the draft to get all the info we could about Joe's look when he went #1 overall to the Bengals.

The white long-sleeved shirt featuring the outline of Ohio and his hometown's area code quickly became a fan favorite on draft night ... but unfortunately, Nike said it was a 1-of-1.

But, that's all about to change, because we're told the plan is to release the shirts on May 22 ... which is great news for fans wanting to cop Joe's look.

It's a smart idea, considering a bunch of knockoff websites made bootleg versions to get a quick buck after the draft ... but now, the legit shirts will take over.

Consider this Burrow's first win of the season!!

Joe Burrow Not A Fan Of LSU Having Live Mascot 'I'm Anti Animal In Cage'

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LET THEM GEAUX
"Pardon My Take" Podcast

"Mike the Tiger is not my favorite part of campus."

Heisman winner Joe Burrow says he's not a big fan of LSU having a live mascot ... saying he's against keeping wild animals in captivity.

The #1 overall pick made the revelation while discussing the super-popular Netflix doc, "Tiger King," on Barstool Sports' "Pardon My Take" on Friday ... saying he probably won't tune in to the series due to the subject matter.

"Actually, I haven't watched it yet," Burrow says. "I'm anti animal in cage. So, I'm not gonna watch it, I don't think."

That's when co-host Big Cat brought up Mike VII -- LSU's beloved mascot that lives on campus -- and Burrow said he was against the idea.

FWIW -- Mike has a huge habitat on campus for students to check out the kitty in between classes ... and there's a vet on-site to make sure all is well.

There's even a live cam for people across the world to check in on Mike ... although the thing seems to be chilling most of the time.

As for "Tiger King," Big Cat and PFT Commenter say it's probably for the best he sits that one out ... and Burrow agrees.

"Very sad, yeah."

The good news?? Burrow's Cincinnati Bengals don't have a live mascot ... they just have a grown-ass dude dressed up as a tiger named "Who Dey" ... so, silver lining!!

Cincinatti Bengals Officially Cut Andy Dalton ... Joe Burrow Era Officially Begins

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9:16 AM PT -- And, it's official ... the Bengals have formally released the QB.

The team put out a statement and a "Thank You" note to Dalton, calling him a "role model" during his time in Cinci.

The Cincinnati Bengals are releasing Andy Dalton ... officially handing over the keys to their franchise to #1 overall pick, Joe Burrow.

The move, confirmed by multiple NFL reporters, will obviously pave the way for Burrow to be the Bengals' Day 1 starter in Cincy.

32-year-old Dalton had a hell of a run for the team ... he was drafted in the 2nd round in 2011 and started 133 games through 2019.

Dalton made three Pro Bowl appearances in his 9-year career ... but new head coach Zac Taylor was clearly ready to move on and begin a new era with Burrow.

Don't cry too much for Andy ... he reportedly made over $80 MILLION in his tenure with the team -- and rumors are Bill Belichick is possibly targeting him to replace Tom Brady in New England.

By the way, we know his arm's certainly up for the task ... remember when the Red Rifle showed off his gun in the backyard with his kids this month?!!?

TYKE HIKE

Yeah, heads up, Jarrett Stidham!!

Originally Published -- 6:37 AM PT

Andy Dalton Toddler Sons Help Dad Work Out Backyard Throwin' Sesh!!!

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TYKE HIKE

Does this look like a guy who's ready to let Joe Burrow take his job without a fight??

Cincinnati Bengals QB (for now) Andy Dalton is still working on his fundamentals during quarantine ... and he's enlisted his 2 adorable sons to help out!!

Seems pretty obvious that Dalton's run as the Cinci starting QB will come to an end next week when the Bengals take Burrow with the #1 overall pick ... but the 32-year-old clearly ain't ready to retire yet!

And, since the pandemic has Andy stuck in the house, Dalton called his sons, Nash and Noah, to the backyard to run him through some QB drills!

SUPER CUTE!!

There were rumblings Bill Belichick and the Patriots could be interested in signing Andy ... but as of right now, seems Jarrett Stidham is the guy in New England.

Still, gotta stay ready ... who knows what next week could bring!

Devon Still's Daughter, Leah I Wanna Be President!!! ... After Beating Cancer

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EXCITED FOR THE FUTURE
TMZSports.com

It's the 2 words Devon and Leah Still have wanted to say for 5 years ... and now it's finally here -- Leah's CANCER FREE!!! And, she tells TMZ Sports her next goal is to be PRESIDENT!!

Of course, Leah's battle with neuroblastoma became a national story ... with the Cincinnati Bengals donating jersey sales to the Cincinnati Children's Hospital, to Torrey Smith and Ellen DeGeneres and so many others contributing.

So, how did it feel to be finally be declared cancer-free by doctors this week? We heard from the star of the day, herself!!

"I felt great and I was really happy, but I was also sad that I couldn't celebrate it like how we usually do every year," Leah tells us. "But, I was also very happy because my dad cooked my favorite meal."

Now that the fight is over, the Stills say they're hoping to help others win their battles with cancer.

"Leah's battle with cancer is over, but our fight against cancer is not over," Devon tells us. "We're going to continue our foundation, the Still Strong Foundation, where we financially assist other families who are battling cancer with their household bills."

Moving forward, Leah has BIG goals for her life ahead ... telling us she's hoping to take over the Oval Office one day.

"I have a lot of 'em, but my two main one is to become president and help the homeless. Also, become a doctor and help kids with cancer."

As for Devon, he says his playing days are over ... but he's more than satisfied being a soccer dad!!

Congrats to the Stills!!!

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