When you announce that someone “showed up” that means they weren’t present prior to then, right?
“We’re starting to look like the Cincinnati Bengals. We’re clicking. Andy Dalton showed up,” Kirkpatrick said following the win, via FOX 19’s Jeremy Rauch.
If Kirkpatrick felt the need to say Dalton “showed up”, that seems like he didn’t think Dalton was showing up in the weeks prior.
Dalton had his best game of the season on Sunday in Cleveland and he was drastically better against the now 0-4 Browns than he had been against the Ravens, Texans and Packers. But, it’s fair to say Dalton has shown up and fought hard in every game, despite the team’s 1-3 record.
A 1-3 start wasn’t what any Bengals fan hoped for, but it’s the reality. Comments like this don’t help the team in moving forward. That’s not to say they hurt the team either. But, I hope this was just a slip of the tongue and not Kirkpatrick truly believing Dalton hasn’t been showing up for this season’s games.
After all, Dalton was pretty sharp against the Packers, too, and much of his issues are due to the highly questionable offensive line play.
Andy Dalton in 2 games since Bill Lazor became #Bengals offensive coordinator: 46-for-57, 498 yards, 6 TD, 0 INT, passer rating = 138.1— Dan Hoard (@Dan_Hoard) October 2, 2017
The line was better in Week 4 and as a result, Dalton was better, too. According to Pro Football Focus, right tackle Jake Fisher allowed the only sack on Sunday while Andre Smith allowed three QB hurries. Left tackle Cedric Ogbuehi didn't allow any QB pressures, which was a nice (and welcomed) change of pace.
Additionally, Dalton’s Week 4 performance saw the NFL’s highest quarterback rating this week, 146.0. That brought him to a season rating of 90.6, good for 15th best, according to PFF. In PFF's adjusted completion percentage (which accounts for dropped passes, throw aways, spikes, batted passes, and passes hit as thrown) Dalton ranked 20th out of 32 in the first three weeks of the season with 73.2% accuracy rate. This week, he ranked first with an 89.3% accuracy rate. Overall for the season, he is eighth out of 32 with a 77.3% accuracy rate.
Of course, this was all against the Browns. But, it’s a step in the right direction. Hopefully we see more of Week 4 Andy Dalton who went 25/30 for 286 yards, 4 touchdowns, 0 interceptions and a 146.0 QB rating. And less of the Week 1 Andy Dalton who went 16/31 for 170 yards, 0 touchdown, 4 interceptions and had a 28.4 QB rating.
And by the way, Kirkpatrick is PFF's 81st rated cornerback in the league right now with a 46.3 grade. With that said, he has no business talking about whether or not Dalton is “showing up”.