Now entering his 5th season in the NFL, Andy Dalton really has something to prove as the Bengals starting quarterback. While his stats are up there with the top QBs in the game, if you look a little closer they are not as glamorous as you think. The intangibles of Dalton are also a concern. But what may be the biggest question of all is his contract.
Prior to last season Dalton signed a 6 million dollar contract. Looking at what Tom Brady got paid, some would argue that Dalton is not just being paid too much and doesn’t deserve it but is it a mistake for the franchise to move forward with him? Dalton indicates some promise in his career but there is also too much to be worried about. Beginning with the truth that despite being the playoffs all these years, he has yet to win a playoff game or have a good playoff game performance. While he’s made two Pro Bowls he is a mistake maker in clutch situations and throws a higher rate of interceptions. This year was a prime example, although he made the Pro Bowl, he had a 19-17 touchdown to interception ratio: not at all impressive.
Now inked for the following five years, Dalton will have to intensify and prove he’s the guy. While you can argue he has had more success than Carson Palmer that doesn’t necessarily mean he deserves that kind of money and commitment. Dalton has too much to prove and the two young QBs behind him are on the outside looking in. Former Alabama quarterback A. J. Carton was a two time national champion and runner up to the Heisman trophy. Needless to say, former Ohio State standout Terrell Pryor was an unsung talent with the Buckeyes and showed some promise with the Raiders. Although it’s unlikely for Dalton to be replaced, these guys are looking for fresh starts: Keyword Starts. With two guys gunning for his job, Dalton must intensify in 2015 otherwise the Bengals will recognize that Dalton’s contract was a mistake and look to move him in wherever they can.