Andy Dalton is the most talked about player in Cincinnati every offseason.
Some fans point to Dalton’s performance under the bright lights of a national stage and say that he will never lead the Bengals to a Super Bowl. Others count their blessings, thinking of the struggles that the Bengals had finding a quarterback throughout the 90s.
Now it is a “New Dey” with a new coach, but the quarterback under center. What can be expected of Dalton in 2019?
College: Texas Christian
Hometown: Katy, TX
Experience: 9th year
Dalton currently has two years remaining on his contract. He stands to make $16.2 million in 2019 and $17.5 million in 2020. Cutting or trading Dalton would result in no dead money.
The Bengals drafted Dalton in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft, and he immediately became the team’s starting quarterback. He has generally been a pretty solid player, but his career has had a few ups and downs.
Like former head coach Marvin Lewis, Dalton carries the stigma of having never won a playoff game. He led the Bengals to the playoffs in each of his first four seasons, but every time, the team fell flat.
Dalton played under offensive coordinator Jay Gruden for his first three seasons. When Gruden left to become the head coach of the Redskins in 2014, Hue Jackson moved into the offensive coordinator role and Dalton, and the offense continued to thrive. In fact, in 2015, Dalton was having arguably the best season of his career before a broken thumb ended his year.
When Jackson left in the 2016 offseason, the Bengals had a much harder time filling void at offensive coordinator, and the offense began to struggle. Compounding this problem was the loss of receivers Marvin Jones Jr. and Mohamed Sanu to free agency. This is a loss that they are only now recovering from. While the Bengals struggled that season Dalton continued to play well.
The following year, the Bengals lost their two best offensive linemen in free agency. Much like with Jones and Sanu a year earlier, there was no good plan for replacing Andrew Whitworth and Kevin Zeitler. The Bengals had a pretty good offensive line leading up to this, but these loses have made the position a liability ever since.
Dalton has struggled in the past few seasons, but with issues at the offensive coordinator, wide receiver, and offense line positions, that isn’t a huge surprise.
Now he is coming off another season-ending injury. At 31 years old, can Dalton find new life in a new coaching staff?
Everybody in the NFL wants a piece of Sean McVay, and now the Bengals and quarterback Andy Dalton have got one in Zac Taylor.
The Rams are a run-heavy team who builds their offense off of the play-action pass. Play-action can put defenders out of position, leading to more open receivers and more big plays, which will certainly help Dalton and his corps of talented receivers.
Dalton has played his entire career up to this point under Marvin Lewis, and until recently, he was playing in essentially the same offensive system. In 2019, Dalton will be playing in an upgraded offense with a head coach and offensive coordinator in Brian Callahan, who have both been quarterbacks coaches.
This is a tremendous opportunity for Dalton to play at his highest level,
Dalton will make the roster, and barring injury, will be the starting quarterback for the Bengals in 2019. He’s look good thus far in the preseason, giving fans hope that he could get back to that 2015 form once all of his receivers are healthy and the offensive line is sorted out.
Roster Odds: 100%