Andy Dalton may not get the respect he deserves, from a national standpoint. But, he’s admired by someone Bengals fans know well.
As the 2017 season slowly starts to ramp up, the Bengals are still in a holding pattern. When it comes to no love given, this could be the worst year in a long time. Due to the poor showing of a losing season, analysts are afraid to go all in and say the Bengals will have a long year. But, the negativity is never-ending. Andy Dalton is no stranger to the hard backhand of the media. Once again, his signal calling pedigree has been put on the front burner.
According to ESPN, both Dalton and AJ McCarron were nothing to write home about. In a ranking of all the QB scenarios in the league, the Bengals chimed in at No. 16. Before you get green with anger (Hulk SMASH), there was nothing truly negative about the piece. What seems to be popular this year is the way the disrespect is way over the top. The questions are simple. Can Dalton play every game and give the Bengals a shot at the Super Bowl? Is he going to be playing much longer? Is McCarron a worthy backup?
Here’s where you can Hulk out. The Pittsburgh Steelers came in at No. 5 on the list. Yes, you read that right. That northeastern team with Ben Roethlisberger and Landry Jones.You know the guy, Jones. He took over for Big Ben in the Wild Card game and almost gave Cincinnati the win. Yes, that guy. Ben has been flirting with retirement for years and Jones isn’t the most popular dude among Steelers fans. But, they rank higher than the Bengals? Go figure.
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Analysts and crack writers can say what they want about Dalton. His numbers were decent for the year. The downfall of the 2016 campaign was a combination of the O-Line and a lackluster running attack. If Dalton had more time to throw, things could have been much different. An effective ground game would’ve also taken some heat off The Ginger.
Did I mention his stats? No need for a ton of numbers. Let’s look at the basics. His completion percentage was 64.7 (Ben, 64.4). He collected 4,206 yards passing (Ben, 3,819). Dalton’s yards per completion was 7.5 (Ben, 7.5). If not for the Bengals’ red zone woes, the TDs and passer ratings would have been closer. So, why the big gap in ranking?
Looking at McCarron’s backup slate versus Jones’ is a no-brainer. The stat line immediately sways in McCarron’s favor. What gives? Oh, my bad. The Steelers won Super Bowl XL. Moving on.
The Other No. 14
"“He’s good,” beamed Anderson, via Bengals.com. “The thing I like about Andy is you can see him get better every year. The thing is, two years ago when he broke his thumb, he was at the point he could carry the team and we were going deep into the playoffs had he not gotten hurt … What you see is the improvement down through the years and I think the future is bright for him.”"
Those words coming from a Bengals legend are more than enough. Anderson has seen his share of quarterbacks and understands the mechanics that make a good player under center.
Let the disrespect continue. It’s all fuel for the 2017 season. Hopefully, Lewis is gathering all the negative writeups for some good old locker room rampages.