Can Andy Dalton Lead The Bengals To Houston?

It’s Time For Andy Dalton To Shine.

There’s no doubt about it. The Bengals have become more than an oddity, when it comes to watching the NFL. Since playing The Game, interest in the Orange and Black has soared. Even Andy Dalton has become a lightweight icon, to fans of the game. But the only thing Bengals faithful are concerned about is winning. Cincinnati backers are hungry for a playoff victory. If Dalton stays healthy, that can easily be accomplished.

The roller coaster ride has been long and arduous. Bengals fans have been dreaming of another Super Bowl appearance, since the 1988 season. January 22, 1989 will be the measuring stick for the Men in Stripes, until they can exorcise the demons. How will that happen? Dalton will have to replicate his stats of 2015, with the exception of one. He’ll have to fight the urge to tackle 300 pound defensive linemen. 

Dalton is a trooper. His pedigree showed, when he tried to bring down Stephon Tuitt. Since then, Dalton has probably received enough Scooby Doo looks to keep him from making the same mistake. With that in mind, the Bengals should have a medically sound quarterback leading the way.

The question isn’t really “if” Dalton can get the Bengals to Houston. The big question is, “how” will he do it? Cue the Match Game theme music. It’s a simple task that could have the Red Rifle in the running for MVP. Offensive coordinator Ken Zampese will be the new puppet master. But when the Bengals offense takes the field, they will have to trust Dalton. New Andy will be expected to continue the maturation process. In other words, when Dalton audibles, it should be unnoticeable. That’s what made the offense so explosive.

The Bengals offense has been tweaked and refined, under Dalton. He’s been under the tutelage of two coordinators, in his six-year stint with Cincy. Yet, he has been able to remain in the same system. That advantage will also be part of the impetus for Dalton navigating the team to NRG Stadium. He knows the scheme and he’ll take chances only when necessary. It’s all part of a healthy and productive signal-caller’s job. 

This year will be the true test of the Red Rifle’s growth. He knows the system, there are shiny new weapons around him and he has a few things to prove. The media believes in Mr. Dalton. Bengals owner Mike Brown believes. Yes. It’s true. When Dalton injured his thumb in Week 14, Brown was devastated. As he and his brother Pete received the news, the season outlook quickly changed. He shared his feelings, via Geoff Hobson of Cincinnati Bengals.

“When Andy got hurt that was about the biggest single adverse thing that could happen to us. I said to Pete, ‘There goes our shot.’ ”

Can Andy Dalton lead the Bengals to Houston and Super Bowl 51? The only obstacle is time.