I’m not sure what Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow has to do to get the proper respect from the national media.

For whatever reason, it seems like the national media is infatuated with Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert and Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen. Those are the young guys getting the hype — hype that Burrow should be receiving.

Sports Illustrated this week, for example, made some “bold predictions” for the 2022 NFL season. One of their predictions is that Herbert will win the NFL MVP award in 2022.

That’s a reasonable prediction, considering Herbert’s impressive 2021 season (in which he passed for 5,014 yards).

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Jan 9, 2022; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) throws a pass for a touchdown against the Las Vegas Raiders during the first half at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The insulting part is that SI didn’t even mention Burrow as a contender. Instead, they mention Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, Russell Wilson, Derek Carr, Aaron Rodgers, Lamar Jackson, and Tom Brady as quarterbacks who could give a “strong push” to Herbert.

From SI:

The Chargers’ quarterback is a star in the making. Despite strong pushes from Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, Russell Wilson, Derek Carr, Aaron Rodgers, Lamar Jackson and Tom Brady, Herbert will push the Chargers into the postseason on the strength of a record-setting season in Los Angeles.

How is Burrow not listed there? All he did in 2021 was take a franchise to the Super Bowl that went a combined 6-25-1 the previous two seasons. And Burrow put up some impressive numbers in the process.

The former LSU star passed for 4,611 yards in one less start than Herbert. Burrow passed for 34 touchdowns and 14 interceptions compared to Herbert’s 38 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. If Burrow plays one more game, their numbers would be very similar.

And let’s not forget that Burrow did all of this while playing behind one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL last season.

Regardless of what Sports Illustrated thinks, Burrow is a legitimate NFL MVP candidate in 2022 (it’s hard to believe that they listed Derek Carr but not Burrow).

Of course, Burrow has his eyes on one thing — winning a Super Bowl. I’m sure he’d be happy to win the MVP award, but he’s more focused on bringing a championship to Cincinnati.

Featured image via Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports