|Ht / Wt:||6'4" / 213 lb.|
|Born:||December 26, 1994|
|Drafted:||2019 / Rd. 4 (104)|
Finley, who didn't play in Sunday's loss to the Ravens, finished his 2020 season completing 17 of 32 passes for 164 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. He also ran 11 times for 66 yards and one touchdown throughout his five games.
Analysis: His second year as a quarterback for Cincinnati, Finley had played an inconsistent backup quarterback role. As starter Joe Burrow suffered a knee injury during Week 11, it was up to Finley and Brandon Allen to take over his duties. While it is clear Allen was the better choice and played more than the 26-year-old, Finley led an upset of the Steelers in Week 15 in a spot start. The quarterback's signed throughout the 2022 season, while Allen is entering the offseason as an unrestricted free agent.
Finley didn't see the field while serving as the backup to starting quarterback Brandon Allen in Sunday's 37-31 win over the Texans.
Analysis: Bengals head coach Zac Taylor declined to name a starter for Week 16, but the prevailing expectation was that Finley would return to the No. 2 role after filling in for the injured Allen in the team's upset win over the Steelers in Week 15. Allen shook off his knee injury to turn in full practices Thursday and Friday, then proceeded to carve up the Texans for 371 yards and two touchdowns while completing 29 of 37 attempts. Allen's stellar outing will leave no question about the Bengals' starting quarterback heading into the Jan. 3 season finale against the Ravens.
Finley completed seven of 13 passes for 89 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions in the Bengals' 27-17 win over the Steelers on Monday night. He also rushed 10 times for 47 yards and another score.
Analysis: Finley spearheaded the NFL's second massive upset in 24 hours, helping the Bengals follow the Jets' lead from Sunday and garner a victory over a Pittsburgh team that had plenty of urgency after coming in with a two-game losing streak. The second-year signal-caller clearly operated with a limited playbook, but he avoided turnovers in a highly difficult matchup and made a substantial impact on the contest with a 14-yard scoring toss to Giovani Bernard and a 23-yard scamper into the end zone on a designed play early in the fourth quarter after the Steelers had pulled to within 17-10. Finley's pair of scores helped make make up for his considerable lack of yardage, and it's possible he may have earned himself a Week 16 start on the road against the Texans even if Brandon Allen (knee) is healthy enough to return.
Finley will start Monday against the Steelers after Brandon Allen (knee) was ruled out, Tyler Dragon of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
Analysis: Finley was hardly impressive in any of his three starts last season, failing to throw for more than 200 yards or complete more than 54 percent of his passes in a Week 9-11 stretch filling in for an ineffective Andy Dalton. It's hard to imagine Finley's stint in the role will be much better in 2020, though the Steelers defense has looked vulnerable in back-to-back losses in recent weeks.
Finley took all the first-team reps with the Cincinnati offense at Thursday's practice while starting quarterback Brandon Allen (knee) was sidelined, Charlie Goldsmith of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
Analysis: Head coach Zac Taylor is viewing Allen as day-to-day after the signal-caller was forced out of action early for a second straight week due to an injury in last Sunday's loss to the Cowboys. Allen's absence from practice to begin Week 15 isn't a promising early sign for his status heading into Monday's game against the Steelers, but the Bengals will wait and see how the next two practices unfold before deciding whether he or Finley will pick up the start. Finley has been wholly unimpressive through his first two seasons in the NFL, completing 51 of 106 pass attempts for 549 yards (5.2 YPA), two touchdowns and four interceptions.
Finley completed one of his two pass attempts for five yards in Week 14 against the Cowboys.
Analysis: Brandon Allen (leg) served as the Bengals' quarterback for nearly the entire game. However, he exited late in the fourth quarter, leaving Finley as the signal-caller for the final two offensive possessions. Given that the game was already well out of reach, he wasn't asked to do much. It remains unclear whether Allen will be healthy enough to retake the starting role in Week 15 against the Steelers.
Finley entered the Bengals' 19-7 loss to the Dolphins on Sunday in place of Brandon Allen (chest) with 7:08 remaining in the fourth quarter and completed six of seven passes for 40 yards with no touchdowns and one interception.
Analysis: Finley averaged just 5.7 yards per attempt but connected on all but one of his short-area throws, doing a serviceable job in emergency duty while playing without the services of Tyler Boyd, who'd been ejected in the first half. Finley had been positively dreadful against in relief of Burrow against Washington in Week 11, completing just three of 10 attempts for 30 yards and an interception in that contest. However, he may find himself in the top job under center in Week 14 against the defensively challenged Cowboys if Allen is unable to suit up.
The Bengals plan to start Brandon Allen at quarterback over Finley in Sunday's game against the Giants, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reports.
Analysis: Finley has been active as the Bengals' No. 2 quarterback all season and replaced top signal-caller Joe Burrow (knee) after the latter tore his ACL and MCL in Sunday's loss to Washington, so the fact that Finley was passed over for the starting assignment in favor of a practice squad call-up in Allen is perhaps an indictment of his abilities. Though the 2019 fourth-round pick out of Boise State only has five NFL appearances to his name, his performance hasn't been encouraging in those outings, as he's completed only 45.4 percent of his passes for 5.2 yards per attempt and a 2:3 TD:INT. Allen's track record at the NFL is only marginally better, so it wouldn't be unfair to downgrade most of the Bengals' skill-position players the rest of the season regardless if Allen or Finley is under center.
With Joe Burrow officially out for the rest of the season, Finley appears to be the next man up, as he's been the backup all season and came in to the game when Burrow got hurt Sunday. But as Ben Baby of ESPN.com reports, Bengals coach Zac Taylor didn't explicitly announce Finley as the starter at Monday's press conference.
Analysis: The Bengals promoted Brandon Allen from the practice squad Monday when they put Burrow on the IR. Allen was on the Rams when Taylor was an assistant there. Finley really struggled both last season and on Sunday against Washington.
Finley completed three of 10 passes for 30 yards and an interception while adding a 19-yard carry after replacing the injured Joe Burrow (knee) in the third quarter of Sunday's 20-9 loss to Washington.
Analysis: Finley struggled as a passer but flashed some respectable wheels on a 19-yard run to pick up a 3rd-and-18. That was one of only two Cincinnati first downs in almost a full half with Finley under center, which is a concerning sign for the fantasy prospects of a Bengals skill position group that had been thriving beside Burrow. Burrow's injury appears to be season-ending, so the 2019 fourth-round pick out of NC State is expected to assume the starting quarterback role for the rest of the season, starting with next week's game against the Giants. Finley lost all three of his starts last season, throwing for 474 yards and a 2:2 TD:INT while adding 77 yards on the ground.
Finley started three regular-season games with the Bengals in 2019, in which he completed 41 of 87 pass attempts for 474 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions.
Analysis: Finley's three starts all resulted in losses for Cincinnati, prompting the team bring back Andy Dalton as the starter Week 12. The rookie also carried the ball 10 times for 77 yards, providing a slight boost to his fantasy value, but his average of 158 passing yards per game and 2:2 TD:INT ratio were pedestrian figures at best. The Bengals possess the No. 1 overall pick for the 2020 NFL Draft, and the team seems likely to consider upgrading at the quarterback position in the offseason.
Coach Zac Taylor said Andy Dalton will be the Bengals starting quarterback moving forward, pushing Finley back to a reserve role, Geoff Hobson of the team's official site reports.
Analysis: During his three-game run as the starter, Finley averaged 158 yards per game, posted two touchdowns versus two interceptions and racked up 10 carries for 77 yards. Those modest numbers and his inability to get the Bengals their first win of the season may have made Taylor's decision an easy one. Nonetheless, Finley will return to donning a headset on game days.
Finley completed 12 of 26 pass attempts for 192 yards and a touchdown during Sunday's 16-10 loss to the Steelers.
Analysis: Finley completed just 46 percent of his pass attempts while averaging a lackluster 7.4 yards per attempt. He connected with Tyler Boyd for a 15-yard touchdown in the second quarter and finished without a turnover, but he simply couldn't make the plays necessary to win a divisional opponent such as this. The coaching staff plans to stick with Finley moving forward, according to Ben Baby of ESPN.com, but he doesn't carry much fantasy upside into next Sunday's matchup with the Jets.
Finley completed 13 of 31 pass attempts for 115 yards and an interception Sunday against the Raiders. He also carried three times for 47 yards in the 17-10 loss.
Analysis: Finley struggled mightily against a beatable Raiders pass defense, completing just 42 percent of his passes while averaging just 3.7 yards per attempt. He did manage to make an impact as a runner, averaging an impressive 15.7 yards per carry, but it wasn't quite enough to make up for his ineptitude as a passer. Finley fared better last week against the Ravens, but next Sunday's matchup with the Steelers could present plenty of challenges as he tries to bounce back.
Finley was 20-of-26 for 150 yards and two touchdowns against Washington in Thursday's second preseason game for the Bengals.
Analysis: Finley did all of his work with the Bengals second-team offense, whereas Jeff Driskell worked with the third team. Finley appears to be on his way to winning the backup job behind Andy Dalton.
Finley is now ahead of Jeff Driskell in the battle to become Andy Dalton's primary backup, Paul Dehner Jr. of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: Finley has a number of factors working in his favor - his draft status as a fourth-round pick this year, his performance in practice and in the first preseason game, where he connected on 12 passes in a row, and that the Bengals saw plenty of Driskell last year and thought enough to find someone else to be Dalton's heir apparent. That Driskell has been getting some reps at wide receiver is also indicative of the status change.
Finley saw his first extended action with the Bengals' second-team offense in Monday's practice, frequently scrimmaging against the first-team defense, Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com reports.
Analysis: Finley has been behind last season's backup Jeff Driskel for the first part of training camp, but he had a good day Monday. Still, the fourth-round pick is likely to begin the season third on the depth chart.
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