SYMMES TOWNSHIP, Ohio — Videos of Joe Burrow and his Cincinnati Bengals teammates smoking cigars after wins have inspired others in the Tri-State to light them up, a celebration John Bell welcomes excitedly.
The owner of Bell's House of Tobacco in Symmes Township said Bengals have come to him for cigars since the franchise's first Super Bowl trip in 1981. His office lined with jerseys, Bell said running back Pete Johnson actually made him a Bengals ashtray.
"Pete enjoys a very good cigar," Bell said.
Like Johnson, Burrow has been known to enjoy cigars after wins. Clips of him smoking after LSU's national championship game went viral in 2020. This season, his teammates posted videos of Burrow dancing and smoking in the locker room once the team clinched the AFC North.
"Every time the Bengals play a postseason game, we get people participating and celebrating," Bell said. "And with Joe’s sponsoring the idea of enjoying a celebratory cigar we got people calling do you know what Joe smoked?"
Bell said Burrow was enjoying a La Flor Dominicana M., a cigar fans like Andy Stacks have been purchasing from his shop.
"He has influenced a couple of my purchases," Stacks said. "I would think that he's got a good taste in cigars."
A cigar aficionado himself, Bell said he has some special items he considers "Burrow-worthy."
"We’ve had a very special blend customized and Joe’s gonna love this, but this is made by the son of the gentleman who rolled and crafted the Cuban Cohiba for Fidel (Castro)."
Bell said the cigar is complex "just like Joe. And it's cool...just like Joe." He's hoping he can get it to Burrow ahead of another win — this time, Burrow's biggest win yet.