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Jay Gruden: Andy Dalton was the best in the draft for Bengals’ offense

Andy Dalton AP

Andy Dalton was the fifth quarterback taken in last week’s NFL draft. Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden thinks Dalton was the best of the bunch at doing what his offense requires.

“What impresses me is the location of the throws. He gives his guy a chance to run after the catch,” Gruden told Bengals.com. “That’s very important throwing to backs, throwing to [Jermaine] Gresham, throwing to A.J. Green. A big part of these guys’ strength is the ability to run after the catch. This offense, if we do throw shorter passes, four, five yards, we’re throwing it to a location so they can catch and run. I think this guy does the best job of anybody in the draft, in my opinion, of doing that. I’m not saying nobody else can’t. I just thought he was the best one at it.”

Gruden’s comments echo those of Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis, who said he thinks Dalton is ready to start for the Bengals right now. That’s good, because if Carson Palmer follows through on his promise never to play in Cincinnati again, the Bengals may have no other good options.

The knock on Dalton in some quarters was that he didn’t have a strong enough arm and lacked the ability to throw the deep ball, but Gruden said he thinks accuracy is what matters, and arm strength is an afterthought.

“It’s so overrated, it’s stupid,” Gruden said.

If Gruden is right, it was stupid of a lot of other teams to pass on Dalton in the first round.

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21 Responses to “Jay Gruden: Andy Dalton was the best in the draft for Bengals’ offense”
  1. FinFan68 says: May 7, 2011 9:21 AM

    What was he supposed to say? “We would rather have gotten _________ but this guy will have to do”

  2. chatham10 says: May 7, 2011 9:45 AM

    I agree with the above comment, what do you expect him to say?

  3. thefiesty1 says: May 7, 2011 10:04 AM

    Yes he is the best QB in the bunch. But for the Bengals, No! There isn’t a good fit on THAT team.

  4. giboxer5 says: May 7, 2011 10:08 AM

    No, keep up with the story and you would know that this was the Bengals #1 QB BEFORE the draft ever happened.. They got their guy and ONLY time will tell if this was yet another Mike Brown bust of a pick or if little Gruden really is smarter than everyone else..

  5. megabeast37215 says: May 7, 2011 10:45 AM

    Blaine Gabbert…. Go Jags…. FTW!

  6. samoanjungle says: May 7, 2011 10:46 AM

    Wasn’t arm strength the knock on Brees, Brady & Montana as well?
    With the average NFL pass completion being around 12-13 yards, I’ll take accuracy over strength any day.

  7. nflsucker says: May 7, 2011 11:08 AM

    I can understand Carson Palmer bailing after the Bengals gave him me-first circus performers to work with as his wide-outs last year. But it sounds like he’s leaving just when the team has made a few intelligent moves in the past two drafts.

    Timing is everything, I guess, and not just in throwing a ball.

  8. ravenator says: May 7, 2011 11:16 AM

    We’ll see how good a fit you are Mr. Dalton, when Ngata collapses the pocket and flushes you out to T-Sizzle.

  9. e15725 says: May 7, 2011 11:29 AM

    I like him at TCU , proven winner with a nice touch on the ball. Reminds me of Joe Montana, doesn’t have the cannon arm but puts the ball right there for the receivers to be successful . Only drawback is the culture of failure in Cincy may just be too much for him to overcome. I’m rooting for him and I am not a Bengals or TCU fan. And by the way all that talk of him failing cause of his redhead is b.s…..and I’m not a Ginger either.

  10. voyager6 says: May 7, 2011 11:42 AM

    Gee, No mention of throwing to Ochocinco. Wonder Why?
    :-)

  11. laxer37 says: May 7, 2011 12:20 PM

    Wow, he’s never thrown a pass in an NFL practice and already Marvin Lewis has determined he can start right now.

    The bengals are hilarious.

  12. nineroutsider says: May 7, 2011 12:22 PM

    Mike Brown, “It was a natural fit for us. His hair color matches the uniform and we can market that in all sorts of ways.”

  13. faderwader says: May 7, 2011 12:39 PM

    He is a mobile, accurate passer. He was by far the best fit for the new system. He’s a better fit than our current, probowl caliber quitterback….

  14. jhorton83 says: May 7, 2011 1:24 PM

    I definitely agree with Jay’s opinion of arm strength. The strongest arm in the world doesn’t mean a damn if you can’t hit the broad side of a barn. JaMarcus Russell and Kyle Boller are a couple of many examples of that. I’ll take an accurate quarterback over a strong-armed quarterback any day of the week.

  15. realfootballfan says: May 7, 2011 1:42 PM

    I’m not saying nobody else can’t.
    ——
    Huh? I expect players to butcher the English language, but Jay, get a grip.

  16. sf69ers says: May 7, 2011 2:59 PM

    • “When we interviewed (TCU QB) Andy Dalton, he said the accomplishment he was most proud of was gathering 750 kids to listen to his ministry every week, not winning the Rose Bowl. When we asked him how he is going to handle guys on the field when the bullets start flying and his teammates are yelling at him, he said the first thing he is going to do is pray about it. I couldn’t help but think, this might be the next Danny Wuerffel. If you are talking about (Dalton) going to be your starter, I would be nervous.”
    http://www.profootballweekly.com/2011/05/03/draft-audibles

  17. hobartbaker says: May 7, 2011 3:02 PM

    Good thing the teams didn’t have access to the picture of Dalton that is up at nfl.com. He would still be checking his phone for free agent invitations.

  18. hawkdawg88 says: May 7, 2011 3:06 PM

    It’s not just strength, it’s quickness of release. How long does it take the ball to get to the receiver after the QB decides he’s going to throw it? That time depends on BOTH arm strength AND release. And even that time doesn’t mean squat if the decision, or accuarcy, are bad.

    But a strong arm and quick release help, no doubt about it. Dalton cannot drive a deep out effortlessly. He may well be able to compensate for that with other skills.

  19. acerockefellar says: May 7, 2011 5:36 PM

    I like dalton but throwing him into a starting role in week 1 is stupid. With the lockout he cant work with any of the coaches. He needs to be shown how to play in the nfl and not just learn it on the fly. The team was horrible last year so throwing him into that right away doesnt make sense either.

    Hire a vet for a year please!

  20. whodeylivedotcom says: May 7, 2011 5:45 PM

    Gruden is right. Accuracy is a lot more important than arm strength, especially in a West Coast offense.

    That said, I still think the team would be wise to let Dalton sit and adjust to the speed of NFL games. He may have seen some NFL talent in the Rose Bowl and non-conference games, but the rest were played against guys who are quite different than what he’ll see on Sundays.

    Let’s see what LeFevour or J. Palmer can do if it comes to that. Heck, five wins is an improvement.

  21. voyager6 says: May 7, 2011 11:51 PM

    @acerockefellar

    Son of Paul needs to be able to generate enthusiam so the flock will buy tickets. That is why he will start day 1.

    People won’t come out for a veteram retread, even though it will be better for the team and Dalton to sit a year.

    I just hope the kid doen’t get Klinglerized.

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