Disclaimer: I want to say Andy Dalton, helped ease the pain of the Carson Palmer situation when he was drafted in 2010. Ok, now that is on the table let’s get to the meat of this post.
Nobody has had more pressure on them leading into the 2013 season than Andy Dalton. Rightfully so, the Bengals have made the playoffs two years in a row, but haven’t won a post season game. They had ample opportunities to beat the Texans in the playoffs last year, but two key throws missed by Dalton altered the outcome. Both throws should’ve been touchdowns to A.J. Green, one was overthrown and the other was underthrown and it led to their demise.
With 2012 behind them and being the young lion in an older division (looks at Ravens and Steelers) all of the experts have pegged the Bengals the team to beat in the AFC North and some think the Bengals have Super Bowl talent. They are right, but the “HUGE” question coming into the season is can Andy Dalton be the person who can lead the Bengals to the promise land? H*** of a question for a franchise that has never won a Superbowl in its entire existence.
With around two thirds of the NFL season in the books we have answered some questions but not all. The Bengals are 1st in the AFC North ,but at times it has been in spite of their 3rd year quarterback. The division is theirs to lose, but if they are going to make that trip to New Jersey this February Dalton must take a lot of the bumps out of this rollercoaster ride that has been the 2013 season.
Some people in the Cincinnati area call Dalton “The Red Rifle” and part of the problem with him is he doesn’t have one of the strongest arms and tends to be late or hang the ball up too much on deep throws. Can your QB lead you to the Bowl without having a rocket arm? Yes they can, but they must still make timely deep throws to get the respect of the coverage.
Each game for the starter has been an adventure, sometimes he looks like a top tier player and at other times he looks like it’s his first day under center for the Bengals. He was the AFC Offensive player of the Month in October, but before then he had a rocky road and currently he is having a rough patch. The last two games against the Ravens and Browns he looked very mediocre. He’s gotten his Schaub on, got sacked for a safety to lose the game and even completed a miracle Hail Mary.
The Bengals have the weapons on offense to get this done and one of the best defenses in the NFL, but it’s all on the triggerman if the people in Cincinnati want to experience something they have never experienced before. A lot of pressure on the 3rd year quarterback, but this is a “what have you done for me lately” league and it’s put up or shut up time in Cincinnati.