When the defense screws up, most of the blame is usually attached to Rey Maualuga's name (whether it was justified or not). When the offense struggles, the fingers are usually pointed at quarterback Andy Dalton -- through offensive coordinator Jay Gruden is sharing more and more of the blame this season.
Yet, Dalton is on pace for 4,000 yards passing, 20 touchdowns, and a career-high 63.5 completion. On the other hand, Dalton is on pace to generate 16 interceptions and his yards-gained per attempt is settling on a number that was achieved in 2012 (6.8-6.9). His completion rate is only a percent point higher than 2012 and his passer rating is taking a tumble to 83.2.
Bad year? Maybe. Maybe not. More like, same ol', writes ESPN NFL expert Ron Jaworski (ESPN In$ider).
I'm really disappointed I haven't seen a quantum leap from Dalton with all of the offensive weapons he has around him in Cincinnati. I know he has limitations with deep-ball accuracy, but with A.J. Green on your roster, you've got to get the ball down the field. When they drafted Giovani Bernard, I thought they'd use him like a Reggie Bush or a Darren Sproles, but that hasn't really happened yet. Still, they're deep at tight end, deep at wide receiver and deep at running back. That's a lot of assets at Dalton's disposal, but he hasn't produced to match that talent level around him.
Jaws ranked Dalton as the No. 18 quarterback in the NFL right now, behind quarterbacks Ryan Tannehill, Matt Schaub and even Eli friggin' Manning.