An Endangered Bengal

Andy Dalton is under the microscope this season. Photo Courtesy: Darryl Briggs
Andy Dalton will be under the microscope this season. Photo Courtesy: Darryl Briggs

By Brad Barrett

After another disappointing end to the Bengals’ season, many fans are wondering if Andy Dalton is the long term answer. In his third year, Dalton had career bests in nearly every category besides interceptions. He tossed a career high 20 picks this past season. Many Bengal fans, including me, think he may have maxed out his potential. When asked, Marvin Lewis responded by saying this:

“He’s won big games for us and he’ll continue to win big games. We ask a lot out of him, there’s no doubt about it,” Lewis said, via the team’s official website. “He just finished his third season of doing it. I believe in his abilities, I believe in his makeup, I believe in his maturity. … He had another very good season. He’s progressed well. We need to continue to do things to make his job just easier and easier to do.”

Cincinnati has a new offensive coordinator in Hue Jackson. He’s going to run the ball a ton and Gio Bernard says the playbook will be “ Super crazy”, and “fun”. This should take much of the pressure off Andy as well as give Bernard and BenJarvus Green-Ellis a chance to make their mark.

Dalton will be in his final year of his contract, so it will most likely be a Jay Cutler or a Joe Flacco situation. Which means they will play it out and see how he does.

In the draft, I want to see Mike Brown take a shot and take a QB in the mid rounds to challenge Dalton. Georgia’s Aaron Murray could be a nice fit in the Jungle.

Thus far in his career, Dalton is nothing more than a Tony Romo. Will he be able to win the big games? We have to wait until the upcoming season to know for sure.