'Just call me Joe': A look at Bengals QB Joe Burrow's ever-increasing number of nicknames

CINCINNATI -- People have called Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow many names during his second season in the NFL.

As his profile has increased, so has the number of Burrow’s nicknames.

Joe Brrr. Joe Cool. Joey Franchise.

But during the first day of Super Bowl LVI’s media festivities, Burrow said he’s indifferent.

“Just call me Joe," Burrow said on Monday during his virtual news conference. "Whatever anybody wants to call me is OK with me."

Burrow has given fans and teammates ample ammunition for all the nicknames. Let’s take a look at the big three.

Joe Brr

This one is a reference to all the icy jewelry Burrow has rocked over the course of his NFL career. It started out with a chain featuring a small No. 9 pendant he wore when the Bengals drafted him, a gift from Louisiana rapper Boosie Badazz. He proceeded to get a bigger version of that chain, a diamond-crusted Carter Santos and most recently, a custom “JB9” chain featuring a variation of the Nike logo.

After the Bengals beat the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game, a reporter asked him if the chain created by Houston jeweler Leo Frost was real. Burrow then delivered the line of the press conference.

“They’re definitely real,” Burrow said. “I make too much money to have fake ones.”

Joe Cool

This nickname -- harkening back to the Camel cigarette commercials in the 1980s -- references Burrow’s relaxed demeanor that has been a staple throughout Cincinnati’s roller-coaster season. Even after the Bengals’ big win on Thursday Night Football over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Week 4, Burrow appeared to play it off, which fits accordingly with his demeanor.

“We’ll win a big game and it’s like whatever to him,” Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd said on Oct. 25. “He’s already in his playbook looking at the next team, figuring out what they do so we can stay on top of what we gotta do for the next opponent.”

That attitude has been consistent even as the Bengals won their first playoff game in 31 years, and then eventually won the AFC championship and are now getting ready for the Super Bowl.

“It feels like another week, honestly,” Burrow said.

Joey Franchise

This has been a favorite among some of Burrow’s teammates, especially tight end C.J. Uzomah, who first gave him that nickname.

And it’s appropriate. When Cincinnati drafted Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 draft, it was with the expectation that he could transform a franchise that went three decades without any playoff success.

He has done that -- and then some. A year after suffering a season-ending left knee injury in his rookie season, Burrow has lifted Cincinnati to the cusp of the Super Bowl.

Those who have known Burrow for a while haven’t been surprised to see the quarterback thrive in his second season. In fact, his status as the face of the franchise was cemented the moment he walked into the building, according to Bengals defensive end Sam Hubbard.

“Anything that Joe ever did from Day One never seemed like it was forced,” Hubbard said on Jan. 27. “It was always natural, just his leadership and the way he carries himself. So I think from day one when he walked in the building people could tell that this was our franchise quarterback.”