Burrow says injured pinky won’t sideline him against 49ers

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Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow (9) is sacked by Los Angeles Chargers’ Justin Jones (93) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Jeff Dean)

CINCINNATI (AP) — Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow says his injured pinky finger on his throwing hand won’t keep him out of Sunday’s game against the San Francisco 49ers.

The finger was dislocated last Sunday when the second-year quarterback was strip-sacked on the Bengals’ first possession against the Los Angeles Chargers.

The right-handed Burrow hasn’t thrown since then and won’t until at least Thursday, coach Zac Taylor said.

Asked Wednesday if there was a chance the injury would keep him out of the 49ers game, Burrow said: “I don’t foresee that happening.”

“It’s a little bit of an unknown until he gets out there and does it, but he’s a tough guy,” Taylor said. “And so we’re optimistic that he’ll get back to practice and get some good work in.”

After the injury, Burrow’s finger popped back into place, but was sore through the rest of the 41-22 loss.

He finished 24 for 40 — a season-low completion rate of 60% — for 300 yards and a touchdown, but threw two interceptions and was sacked a season-high six times. He tried taping the finger and wearing a glove, but finally just went without any protection on the hand. He said he didn’t know how or if he would protect it this Sunday.

“Anytime you have a finger injury on your throwing hand, it’s going to take some tweaking to see how you’re going to be able to throw the ball,” he said. “But it didn’t hinder me too much on Sunday, and I think it’s going to continue to get better throughout the week.”

Taylor said he trusts his quarterback.

“He’s in pretty good control of that. I’m not going to dictate what he wears or puts on it,” Taylor said. “He knows better than I do how it’s going to feel and what he needs to do to get ready. I have full faith in him to get himself ready for Sunday.

Burrow’s teammates certainly aren’t concerned.

“He’s tough,” tight end C.J. Uzomah said. “He’s tough as hell.”

San Francisco (6-6) comes to Cincinnati (7-5) with both teams on the edge of the playoff picture in their respective conferences.

NOTES: Taylor said C Trey Hopkins (ankle) and T Riley Reiff (ankle) are day to day and will be worked back into practice this week. … G D’Ante Smith (knee) and CB Trae Waynes (hamstring) were cleared to return to practice.

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