CINCINNATI (FOX19) - After his first practice in his first ever game week as a starting quarterback in the NFL, Ryan Finley said he’s ready -- he thinks.
The Bengals promoted the rookie fourth round draft pick to starter last week and his first game will be Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens at Paul Brown Stadium.
“Obviously, it’s a lot different, but I think I’m ready for it," said Finley on Monday. "I’m confident in my ability to play and I’m confident in this team’s ability to bounce back and get some wins. It’s fun for me. It’s definitely new for me, but I’ve got a lot of support around me.”
Finley played the majority of the Bengals’ offensive snaps in the preseason at quarterback, finishing with three touchdown passes, one interception and completed nearly 74% of his passes. Finley says he feels comfortable at practice, but can’t predict how he’ll perform in a regular season game.
“There’s nothing like live bullets and an actual game. All I can do is have the right mindset and visualize myself having success and having that carry over to the game.”
His first game is against the first place Ravens and MVP candidate Lamar Jackson. He competed against Jackson in college and said the match-up is “gonna’ be fun.”
The Bengals are the only team in the NFL without a win and have never finished a season with fewer than two wins. The Bengals are likely to pursue a quarterback in the upcoming draft, unless Finley helps turnaround one of the worst starts in franchise history.
“We want to be optimistic and that’s our goal - to win," Finley added. "Flat out. Period. That’s the message (head coach Zac Taylor) is putting out there and I’m behind him.”