Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow may have received some motivation from an unlikely source this week ahead of a huge playoff matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs.

There’s been a debate raging this week on the daily sports talk shows about who the best quarterback in the NFL is right now.

And many of the talking heads — including folks like ESPN’s Dan Orvlosky — believe that Burrow is the best quarterback currently playing in the NFL.

ESPN’s Marcus Spears, however, isn’t one of those folks.

Spears, who, like Burrow, played college football at LSU (nearly 15 years apart), said on Tuesday that he still thinks Patrick Mahomes is the best quarterback in the NFL over Burrow.

bengals
Jan 18, 2020; Baton Rouge, LA, USA; LSU Tigers quarterback Joe Burrow during the LSU Tigers College Football Playoff national championship celebration and parade. Mandatory Credit: Andre Broussard/Special to The Advertiser via USA TODAY Sports

“Patrick Mahomes is the best quarterback in the NFL,” said Spears on Tuesday. “Now, we could end it at that, but I’ll go a step further. Because I think the world of Joe Burrow. Y’all know my affinity for Joe Burrow. Joe Burrow delivered a national championship –the best team ever — to Louisiana State University. He is the guy that I think will be in competition with Mahomes to win Super Bowls.”

“We all know that if Patrick Mahomes had Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd that he’d throw for 7,000 yards a season,” added Spears. “Are we seriously having this conversation? Look, Joe Burrow is phenomenal. Joe is the guy that’s making that thing go in Cincinnati. But let’s not act like Patrick Mahomes ain’t been the guy making the thing go in Kansas City…What are we talking about?”

“I believe that if Patrick Mahomes had those guys that Joe Burrow is afforded to throw the football to, he would throw for 7,000 yards in a season. I do believe that.”

Spears isn’t slamming Burrow — he makes it clear that he’s a huge Joey B fan.

But his point about Chase, Higgins, and Boyd makes zero sense. Is he insinuating that Burrow is nothing without those guys? They’re great players, but Burrow makes them better, too. They all complement each other.

I mean, Mahomes had Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce on the same team for years. What if Burrow had those guys? And we know based on what Hill did with the Miami Dolphins this season that Mahomes didn’t “make” Hill.

Where would Mahomes be without Kelce? He certainly wouldn’t have been able to lead the Chiefs to a win over the Jacksonville Jaguars on one leg last weekend without Kelce.

I don’t think there’s a clear winner in this argument. Both quarterbacks are generational players that are the main reason their respective franchises are in back-to-back AFC Championship games.

But suggesting that Mahomes would throw for 7,000 yards if he had Burrow’s receivers is one of the most absurd things I’ve heard on television. And the fact that it’s coming from a former LSU player is beyond surprising.

Burrow should absolutely feel slighted by this. And considering we know Burrow has some pettiness in him, I bet he’ll take notice of these comments and he’ll use it as fuel to play at a high level against the Chiefs.

By the way, Burrow is 3-0 against Mahomes. I think that gives him an edge in this argument regardless of what Spears said on Tuesday.

Featured image via Sam Greene/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK