The Bengals have had an unprecedented level of success over the past four years with a 40-23 overall mark and four-straight trips to the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.
However, none of those trips included a playoff win, which has led to a heavy amount of criticism falling on Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton. Whether it be the national media or from his own fans, Dalton doesn't let the negativity bother him, and that's because he knows there's a lot of positive things he's done in his first four NFL seasons.
Andy Dalton: "you can look at stuff that's negative and stuff that's positive. There's a lot of positives I've done."— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) September 9, 2015
You hear a lot of the negative but still a lot of positive. I think what's good the expectations has changed. -Dalton on the negativity— Lindsay Patterson (@LndsPatterson) September 9, 2015
I'm not worried about all that stuff because so many people have supported me or supported this team. -Dalton— Lindsay Patterson (@LndsPatterson) September 9, 2015
As for this year, Dalton continues to express confidence in what may be the best supporting cast he's ever had in the NFL. With guys like Tyler Eifert and Marvin Jones now healthy to go with the emergence of Rex Burkhead, this year's Bengals team has the potential to possess one of the NFL's most explosive offenses in 2015, and Dalton feels confident in having control of it. "I've got a lot of confidence in what we are doing. I feel like I'm in full control," he added on Wednesday.
The truth is, Dalton has done enough during his first four years that no one should be questioning if he should be the starting QB for every game this season.
After this year, that may be up for debate, but we're not in 2016 or beyond that yet. It's time to focus on the now, and the now is Dalton being the unquestioned starter for this Bengals team, a team poised for another trip to the playoffs.