The topic of Andy Dalton is as divisive as any in Cincinnati; if you're looking to generate some comments for an article, mention Dalton (sometimes in passing) and it generates activity. Everyone has an opinion whether it's that he doesn't perform in big moments, doesn't have the right supporting cast and even quarterbacks coach Ken Zampese has taken his turn on blame.
It's really just background noise in the grand scheme of things.
Dalton is faced with his own task of leading this team. Coaches and teammates have noticed the change.
"He’s definitely a little more vocal," said tight end
"I think he’s definitely being more vocal this year," running back Jeremy Hill said via Bengals.com. "In my opinion he was vocal last year, but this year (it’s more to do with the little things). Obviously Hue knows exactly what he wants; it’s his offense. But at the end of the day, he wants his quarterback to be a model of him. "Andy’s going to do the right thing. He’s going to be more vocal and I think that will definitely help our team in the long run," Hill added.
No one appears more impressed than Hue Jackson, the offensive coordinator who is watching Dalton become an extension of himself.
"I was doing it all. He’s doing it now and that’s his job," Jackson said at Bengals.com. "Good demeanor. Different in the sense that he’s more mature. He understands. He expects a lot from his guys, he expects a lot from himself. So he’s pushing. He talked to them twice before we even came out here. He’s taken the lead."