Hue Jackson on importance of Jason Campbell to Andy Dalton

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Bengals didn't add many free agents this offseason, and most of them will be seldom-used backups. That's at least he case with quarterback Jason Campbell, but just because he's not playing, it doesn't mean he won't impact this team.

Taken with the No. 25 overall pick by the Washington Redskins in 2005, Campbell has never been under a stable situation. He's had numerous offensive coordinators and head coaches in his nine years in the league, but Hue Jackson was one of his favorites.

"Hue’s a competitor," said Campbell, via "He’s not going to let anybody get pushed around. He’s a guy that wants to take the fight to the opposing team and he’s going to motivate guys really well to get the best out of them."

For the first time in Andy Dalton's young career, he'll have a backup with significant starting experience. Bruce Gradkowski had 11 career starts before signing on to tutor Dalton as a rookie.

Since then, Dalton has started in 51 games (including playoffs), but that's still not as many as Campbell's 79 career starts in 86 games.

"I think he brings a veteran’s presence," said Jackson of Campbell. "He’s been around the league, he’s been with different teams, and he’s seen a lot of different defenses. I think he has a calming effect on most people. He’ll be good in the quarterbacks room with Andy and he’ll do a good job that way."

Dalton agrees, and is happy to have someone whose been through the fire and has wisdom to share.

"He’s been around for a long time and came in with a good understanding of the game," said Dalton. "This is year ten for him – we always joke around about how old he is – but he’s had a good career. He’s a cool, easy-going guy and we have a great relationship."

Campbell knows Dalton is the man in Cincinnati, and he likes what he's seen of the fourth-year pro.

"Andy’s got a lot of games under his belt," said Campbell. "He’s won a lot of games and he’s been to the playoffs three years in a row. So it’s not a mentor-type thing. It’s more a matter of helping him see things from afar that he might not notice at the time. I just want to do everything that I can to help him and at the same time stay prepared and do the best that I can do."

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