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Bengals' AJ Green On Andy Dalton: "I don't want any other quarterback"

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In speaking with the NFL Network on the heels of his No.9 ranking on their top players list, Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green gushed about his quarterback.

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One of the most dramatic franchise turnarounds in recent NFL history occurred back in 2011 with the Cincinnati Bengals. Amidst much turmoil, including the loss of their franchise quarterback and the then-unpopular re-signing of an embattled head coach, the team was pegged to finish winless that year by many pundits. But, a funny thing happened on the way out of New York City in late April of that offseason--they landed two picks in the draft that changed the direction of the team.

Wide receiver A.J. Green at No.4 overall and quarterback Andy Dalton at No.35 overall were chosen by the rebuilding Bengals and their impacts were immediately felt. There were minimal growing pains and the team made the playoffs when the two were rookies. In fact, the playoffs are all that the two have known as professional football players.

There have been some unfounded conjectures being thrown about surrounding possible unhappiness on Green's part with the sometimes erratic play from his quarterback. It's a confusing proposition, really, given that Green is on track to be the greatest receiver in team history, has made the Pro Bowl in each of his first three seasons, was rated No.9 on the NFL Network Top-100 List and the relatively high amount success that both players have tasted in their young careers. Still, some fans and media members believe that there is some untapped potential from Green because many believe that he isn't paired with "an elite quarterback".

Just don't tell Green any of that nonsense. In an interview with the NFLN staff following the unveiling of his ranking, the second-best wide receiver in the NFL gushed over his quarterback.

"We came in together and that is the great thing for me and him," Green said. "I know he's my guy. I don't want any other quarterback throwing me the ball. I think he feels the same way about me."

"He (Dalton) feels confident that whether I'm double covered, triple covered, it don't matter I'm going to come down with the ball," Green said. "And I feel like we've grown over these last three years and I feel like this year is going to be another key year for us."

The cynic might say that the even-keeled Green is just towing the company line and is pumping up his quarterback to be a good "team guy" even though e doesn't truly feel that way. The homer would say "See?! I told you there weren't any issues!". However, the moderate on the emotional spectrum would likely say that these actually are Green's true feelings and that he and Dalton have unfinished postseason business. Maybe it's a touch of all of the above.

Regardless, with the Bengals working on a long-term contract for Dalton after 2014 and the Bengals exercising the fifth-year option with Green for 2014, these two look to be continuing what they've built since that surprising 2011 campaign. Maybe it's time to put unsubstantiated rumors to rest and actually listen to the words spoken from the franchise players themselves.