Andy Dalton probably faced his toughest defense of the year and came out of it a better quarterback. Sure he was intercepted three times and only threw one touchdown pass, but he looked like a seasoned veteran out there. Most of the press is given to Cam Newton and admittedly he deserves quite a bit of press. He is very good and has exceeded the expectations of many, however Dalton stepped into what I considered to be an impossible situation, replacing a franchise quarterback in Carson Palmer who quit on the team.
I fully expected the Bengals to maybe win six games all season, instead he has played the role of the offensive leader of the team. With the help of fellow rookie AJ Green, Jerome Simpson, Andre Caldwell, and Jermaine Gresham he has been able to turn this Bengal team into a solid group of performers. Of course it does help that Cedric Benson has also been solid behind him. So far this season Dalton has thrown for 2239 yards, 15 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
His last two games were against the Steelers and Ravens, two of the best defenses in the league. He took a beating and ended up 0 and 2 for his efforts. I think though that the beating he is taking this season will turn out to be a good thing in the end. Many good quarterbacks go through this their first seasons. Dalton will be a solid QB in this league for years to come.
I would consider his cards to be a must buy at this point even though most are being sold in the neighborhood of $40 – $50. High for certain but cheap if he turns out to be the next Troy Aikmen. I’m not saying that he is Hall of Fame worthy after his first season, but I am saying that he is going to be a top tier quarterback next season and for seasons to come.
What do you think of Andy Dalton?