Bengals organization has reservations about Andy Dalton

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Andy Dalton was available at the 35th pick in the 2011 draft because he has physical limitations. He isn’t particularly big, strong-armed, or athletic. And so Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden had to design creative ways to mask Dalton’s deficiencies in his first year, while maximizing the rookie signal caller’s strengths.

Gruden did a great job — particularly in a lockout-shortened offseason — but in some circles Dalton is now being billed as a future elite player. Not so fast.

“I think there’s a sense right now, for a lot of people, that Dalton’s on his way toward being a great quarterback,” NFL Films producer Greg Cosell told Yahoo! Sports. “I can tell you that those in the Bengals’ organization have a few doubts as to what his true upside is. Because at the end of the day, while I think Dalton is a good player, I think — not I think, I know — that he’s got some arm strength limitations.

“And there’s some things that they’re not comfortable doing with him.”

Cosell isn’t typically in the reporting business, but it’s no secret that he speaks to coaches and front-office men, and is well respected inside the NFL community. He’s a reputable and reliable voice, and the stats support Cosell’s statements.

The league seemed to catch onto Dalton’s act about midway through his rookie year. In the Bengals’ final nine games, including the playoffs, Dalton completed just 169-of-301 passes (56.1 percent) for 1,959 yards (6.51 YPA) with seven touchdowns compared to 12 turnovers. Dalton roared out of the gates against a soft early-season schedule, only to flounder when the passing windows got smaller against stouter stretch-run defenses.

Dalton still finished second in NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year voting, and quarterbacked a 9-7 team that qualified for a wild-card playoff spot. No one can take away the accolades of that first season from Dalton.

But the jury is still very much out on him entering year two.

78 responses to “Bengals organization has reservations about Andy Dalton

  1. The kid has always been a winner and won games last season Carson Palmer would have quit in. Is this not the same things that was being said about Drew Brees a few years ago? Not that I’m comparing him to Brees, until this kid stops winning because of his “limitations” I’m not gonna worry about him.

  2. I remember when people were saying they would take Dalton over Newton. Those people were crazy then, they’re crazy now.

  3. The league caught on to him last year, and this year the wall is going to hit him so hard you’re going to think it was growing out of his ass.

  4. Shots fired at Dalton. Shrugs. I’m sure he can care less. Cosell must be a big Newton fan. You know you can’t like one without taking a shot at the other.

  5. This Raven fan thinks he is gonna be the best overall QB in the AFCN for years to come, but I also think having AJ Green catching those aly-oops passes makes Dalton’s job that much easier.

  6. Cosell is wrong even more than his dad was. Non story.

    As if the Bengals would know a good quarterback if Johnny Unitas fell on their collective head.

  7. In the Bengals’ final nine games, including the playoffs, Dalton completed just 169-of-301 passes (56.1 percent) for 1,959 yards (6.51 YPA) with seven touchdowns compared to 12 turnovers

    That’s probably because he faced the Ravens and Steelers top ranked Defenses twice at the end of the year, as well as Houston. 20 tds a rookie in the NFL is nothing to sneeze at, and he had about as good a rookie qb season as anyone not named Cam Newton. I think he’ll be fine.

  8. I’m not comparing Andy Dalton to Drew Brees by any means — but I’m sure the San Diego Chargers had Brees’ “physical limitations” in mind when they let him walk to New Orleans in 2006.

  9. Really? According to Howard Cosell’s nephew? Are you kidding me? Silva shouldn’t run with a story like this unless someone in the organization actually expresses reservations about the player. Otherwise, it sure looks like Silva is making things up.

  10. Besides, I thought arm strength was overrated in the WCO? That’s really the only shot you can take at him and the only real thing Cosell hinted to. And take it from a Cinci fan, the only thing defenses figured out was that A.J was really the only receiver he trusted, and the run game wasn’t anything to stress about. Hopefully that has changed with the offseason additions.

  11. I would rather have a guy who has limitations but will do anything to win, then a guy who has all the tools but decides not to always use then.

  12. NFL defenses adjust to your weaknesses. Dalton will face a reality check in his second season.

    And no, he’s nothing like Drew Brees, who has a great arm and was a gunslinger in a college pro-style offense against Big Ten defenses.

    Dalton has many positive qualities, but arm issues will always limit his upside.

  13. As a Ravens fan, I watched several Bengals games last year and I do think Dalton is on his way and has intangibles you need to be a successful QB. After the ’11 draft, I felt he an Kaepernick would be two of the best QBs out of that class (til Cam proved me wrong). That said, everyone does need to slow their roll on Dalton and Cam for that matter. These are young guys with tons of growth yet to come and there will be some rough patches, there always is with every young QB.

  14. Whatever, it’s the Bengals, they will once again be competing with the Brownies for the AFC North for last place.

  15. Eli Manning was awful his first 3 years… Not questionable, or struggling, but flat out awful.

    These small-market teams just don’t have the patience or fortitude to stick with an investment.

  16. It is going to be much tougher for Dalton this year. There is no question about that. The AFC North is one of the toughest divisions in football. And the other teams’ defenses will no doubt have schemes to get at this ginger and put some very serious hits on him. Get at him before he can get the ball out to his receivers and take away the short passing game. Cincy isn’t going to sneak up on anyone this year. The O-line is going to have to have to stay healthy and protect the ginger slinger.

  17. Ben Roethlisberger, Eli Manning, Phillip Rivers all started out fast, then had a minor slump as teams caught up with them. All three proved to be good enough to evolve.

    The question is will Dalton? A lot of QBs start off strong but cannot maintain it.

    Nonetheless, there is no story here, just the same question that every QB goes through.

  18. discosucs2005 says:
    May 21, 2012 9:50 AM
    I remember when people were saying they would take Dalton over Newton. Those people were crazy then, they’re crazy now.
    _____

    You beat me to it. Particularly insulting to Newton has been all the “Dalton won more games, therefor he is better than Newton.” Never mind that Dalton had a top-10 defense while Newton was working with a marshmellow defense that required him scoring 40 points every week to have a chance in hell to win; never mind that Dalton was playing a marshmellow schedule the first half of the year; never mind that Dalton set zero rookie or NFL records while Newton set several.

    It is true that the second and third years are better barometers on rookies once the other side of the ball has a chance to adjust to them. But I’m still taking Cam over Dalton every day of the week and 3 times on Sunday.

  19. nflofficeadmin says:
    May 21, 2012 10:13 AM
    It is going to be much tougher for Dalton this year. There is no question about that. The AFC North is one of the toughest divisions in football. And the other teams’ defenses will no doubt have schemes to get at this ginger and put some very serious hits on him. Get at him before he can get the ball out to his receivers and take away the short passing game. Cincy isn’t going to sneak up on anyone this year. The O-line is going to have to have to stay healthy and protect the ginger slinger.
    ————————————————–

    Maybe, but consider: The offensive line is improved from last season to include Kevin Zeitler. Add in Mohamed Sanu, Orson Charles, and Marvin Jones. Bringing back Jordan Shipley too.

    No defense is covering Gresham AND Charles AND Sanu one on one on intermediate routes in a WC offense.

    Dalton will have a better offense to work with this season.

  20. if talking about size, you might want to bring up that Andy Dalton is 6 foot 2 inches tall, and “listed at 220” (put on 7-8 lbs of muscle this offseason, so 227 to be safe).
    Aaron Rodgers is 6 foot 2 inches and 225 lbs.

    Not saying he’ll be the next Rodgers, but your making it seem likes he’s a tiny little dude

  21. “He isn’t particularly big, strong-armed, or athletic. And so Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden had to design creative ways to mask Dalton’s deficiencies in his first year, while maximizing the rookie signal caller’s strengths.”

    You mean a team actually tried to protect their rookie starting QB from falling flat on his face?

    NO WAY! /sarcasm

    I think Dalton will be fine, if his supporting cast stays healthy and out of prison.

  22. @jagsfanugh says:
    May 21, 2012 10:18 AM
    “You should always draft a player you have doubts about. Hmm at least the Bungles think so it seems.”

    Sorry Jag Fan, but until your team shows even the slightest indication of being at least an average football team, your opinion is worthless. Go talk to Brownsfan, you guys have a lot in common.

  23. regisphilbin says:
    May 21, 2012 10:06 AM
    $10 says Gabbert has a better year than Andy in 2012.
    ————————————————–

    Blane Gabbert, meet Bob Bratkowski.

  24. I am a die hard bengal fan and i agree with cosell to a certain extent. Howver but may have forgotten that what keeps dalton going is his Poise and presence in the hudlle, not to mention anticipation, i’ll take these attributes each and every sunday…..just Saying!

  25. jgedgar70 says:
    May 21, 2012 10:19 AM
    discosucs2005 says:
    May 21, 2012 9:50 AM
    I remember when people were saying they would take Dalton over Newton. Those people were crazy then, they’re crazy now.
    _____

    You beat me to it. Particularly insulting to Newton has been all the “Dalton won more games, therefor he is better than Newton.” Never mind that Dalton had a top-10 defense while Newton was working with a marshmellow defense that required him scoring 40 points every week to have a chance in hell to win; never mind that Dalton was playing a marshmellow schedule the first half of the year; never mind that Dalton set zero rookie or NFL records while Newton set several.

    It is true that the second and third years are better barometers on rookies once the other side of the ball has a chance to adjust to them. But I’m still taking Cam over Dalton every day of the week and 3 times on Sunday.
    ————————————————————
    Dalton set many Rookie QB records big girl.
    How about this one…only rookie QB EVER to throw 20 or more TD’s and win more than 8 games. OH, and he led his team to the playoffs with a rookie (STUD) WR, and brand new offense in a lockout/no offseason year.

    And don’t give me the team comparison BS, Cam stats were largely due to him having to throw the ball around and play catchup- double edge sword buddy. Dalton plays in the toughest division in FB….and wasn’t the #1 overall pick- do i’d say his season was nothing short of remarkable

  26. Saying the organization has reservations is very different than the organization saying he has limitations.

    When you say the Bengals have “reservations,” you’re implying that they think he can’t get the job done.

    When you say he has “limitations,” well, sure, who doesn’t? You just play around them. Peyton Manning has limitations…he can’t run.

  27. regisphilbin says:
    May 21, 2012 10:06 AM
    $10 says Gabbert has a better year than Andy in 2012.

    ___________________________________

    Define “better” and I’ll take that action.

  28. Brett Favre went to the Pro Bowl after his first year with the Packers; was awful in his second season; and then used a career-changing performance against the Bears on Halloween night in season three to springboard Green Bay to two Super Bowl appearances and a Hall of Fame resume. Dalton may have arm limitations, but his game day pedigree does resemble a certain country bumpkin from Mississippi.

  29. If he really works at it he can be as good as Matt Ryan someday. That’s about his ceiling. Not great, but good.

  30. regisphilbin says:
    May 21, 2012 10:06 AM
    $10 says Gabbert has a better year than Andy in 2012.
    ——–
    Can we make it $10,000? Gabbert is pathetic.

  31. If don’t have arm strength you go nowhere in this league. It’s that simple. Pennington had a great year or two, but then he tapered off because teams knew he couldn’t throw the deep ball or out routes.

    Dalton will be a 10-20 ranked QB in this league. Nothing more, nothing less.

  32. The Bengals came to the conclusion that Dalton has some serious shortcomings AFTER drafting him. He was walking out of the showers and and coach walked in, took and look and said… “That’s it??” Dalton immediately turned bright red.

    Point goes to Newton.

  33. What a joke. Leads the team out of the cellar and into the playoffs with zero fan support and now they start to question him? Please. Start with your pourous defense and find a running back.

  34. jagsfanugh says:
    May 21, 2012 10:18 AM
    You should always draft a player you have doubts about. Hmm at least the Bungles think so it seems
    ————————–
    Blaine. Gabbert.

  35. another misleading headline to get hits and comments.

    Nowhere does Cosell say the Bengals have reservations about Dalton. Nowhere.

    Every QB has limitations. Every single one.

    Next…..

  36. Are you effin kidding me with this? First of all Cosell? give me a break. Secondly, coaching around somebody’s limitations – what a novel concept.

    Everybody on vacation or something? you got the interns covering this rag this week?

  37. shackdelrio says:
    May 21, 2012 9:46 AM
    Shaun King 2.0?

    __________________

    No… Chad Pennington 2.0, first time i saw Dalton in a Bengals game I compared him to Pennington. He will be a good solid quarterback nothing more nothing less. He is going to keep that team competitive but he will always struggle against strong defenses.

  38. This is so dumb.. Yeah he didnt play well down the stretch.. Sorry he didnt torch Ed Reed and Troy Polamalu future hall of famers in his rookie season with no mini camps or off season.. Gresham was hurt last year, green was a rookie, and shipley was out for the year.. I expect his second year to be even bigger with the weapons the bengals have added.

  39. @realnflmaster

    I think your a Jets fan, as most of your posts allude to a Jets player most of the time, so I’ll ask you this. Tim Tebow’s arm is strong, so that means he will be an awesome NFL QB right? Derek Anderson had a Rocket launcher mounted to his shoulder, so he’s succesful, right? First, the out route is a difficult route to complete for any QB, it’s more about timing and accuracy than arm strength (Unless your running the 7-12 yard variety, then Arm Strength is important). I’ve seen him throw the deep ball, he has plenty of touch, and pretty good accuracy. Arm Strength is somewhat overrated in todays NFL. Crossing patterns, timming routes, 5-8 yard back shoulder throws, curls, swings. Those are the most effective routes in the NFL today. Why? Because they take take the shortest time to develop. A 7-12 yard out route is usually a 2nd-3rd read, or, a 7 step drop pattern. It just takes too long to develop. Also, why attack some of the most athletic guys on the field when you can create mismathces with TE’s on LB’s and Safteys on Slot guys. The team has to willingly be succesful with Dalton for them to have success. Look at Chan Gailey. He wanted to be succesful with the guys he has had, so he has molded his offense around them. Dalton reminds me more of Ryan Fitzpatrick than any other QB mentioned. I’m sure Andy will have a better career, but the physical tools are the same, as well as the intelligence. I’m sure it will be Dalton to Green in stripes for a very long time.

  40. If Cosell was so smart some NFL team would give him a job. Dude works for NFL Films. Does anyone care what the Sabol family thinks about prospects? NO. So why do we care what Cosell thinks? If he was so shrewd wouldnt he be working for one of the 32 teams?

  41. Pretty stupid, if it’s true. I see this guy as a genuine leader and franchise QB. If the Bengals didn’t want him, I would hope that Scott Pioli would be on the phone immediately trying to pawn Cassel onto them in exchange for Dalton.

  42. His physical limitations are that he is a red head. No red haired quarter back has ever won a playoff game let alone a Super Bowl. You cannot win a Super Bowl when you team is ripping on your starting QB.

  43. Carson Palmer was the quarterback here for around 9 years.. He had 2 playoff games. Andy Dalton 1 year- 1 playoff game. Dalton will be a lot better than Palmer, and is my opinion will be a top ten QB in this league for years to come.

  44. Hey “realnflmaster”..
    Couple things:
    1) First I think you mean “You’re” not “your”

    2) I don’t think you understand the reference to a “strong arm” when referencing a QB. It doesn’t mean the size of their biceps. Tim Tebow has MUSCULAR arms but does NOT have a “strong Arm” in terms of ability to throw deep.

    For someone who is an “NFLMASTER” you sure seem to have little understanding of general football terminology…

  45. I’m fine with the comparisons to pennington. He was fantastic, even with limited arm strength, till the injuries piled up. In a west coast offense he will do fine. Still wouldn’t mind a running game, though the firm is a better goal line back than we have had in ages.

  46. “Dalton roared out of the gates against a soft early-season schedule, only to flounder when the passing windows got smaller against stouter stretch-run defenses.”

    Everybody noticed this but Bungals fans won’t own it, they run from the truth like it’s the plague.

    I fully expect Dalton and Green to have a much tougher time this year.

  47. joetoronto says:
    May 21, 2012 12:06 PM
    “Dalton roared out of the gates against a soft early-season schedule, only to flounder when the passing windows got smaller against stouter stretch-run defenses.”

    Everybody noticed this but Bungals fans won’t own it, they run from the truth like it’s the plague.

    I fully expect Dalton and Green to have a much tougher time this year
    ————————————————————
    What truth are us Bengal fans running from? We beat the teams we should have beat, and struggled big time against playoff caliber teams…with a rookie QB/WR Pro Bowl combo, and rookie NFL Offensive Coordinator…in the no offseason lockout year.
    Truth is Dalton had a more successful season than the #1 overall pick and OROY. In Cincy, we want WINS not STATS.

  48. Joetoronto

    So what your saying is that a rookie with no experience is supposed to come out and beat great defensive teams like the steelers, ravens, and texans?? Remember that all the teams in our division finished in the top 10 for defense.

  49. Stick to your crappy Canadian football. Joe your opinion is a joke. Fully expect the Bengals to make the playoffs this year.

  50. cincyhokiesays:
    Maybe, but consider: The offensive line is improved from last season to include Kevin Zeitler. Add in Mohamed Sanu, Orson Charles, and Marvin Jones. Bringing back Jordan Shipley too.

    No defense is covering Gresham AND Charles AND Sanu one on one on intermediate routes in a WC offense.

    Dalton will have a better offense to work with this season.

    *******

    Plus, you got the ANTI-fumble machine in BJGE.
    Old slow and steady wins the race.

    Of course, with the Bengals luck, he’ll probably have his first professional fumble in week 1…

  51. Cincinnati has forever been a losing franchise, and Dalton takes them to the playoffs his first year there. And they have doubts about him?

    No wonder Cincinnati has forever been a losing franchise.

  52. ‘………he has physical limitations. He isn’t particularly big, strong-armed or athletic…….’

    ================================

    Sure, thats what they said about Joe Montana back in the day.

    How many big, strong-armed and athletic QB’s can you name that have completely flunked in the NFL ?

    Dalton just wins games, has done right thru college, and against all the odds posted a rookie winning NFL season.

    Thru’ it all, the one thing that impressed me about Dalton last year, was just how damn cool he looked rollin’ into tough gigs in places like Pitt and B’more. He just looked like he belonged. And if you don’t believe me , just go ask Roethlisburger; full of praise for Dalton.

    If they were to re-run last years draft knowing what they know now, Dalton would be top 10, maybe #2 after Cam. How many teams that passed on him, wish they had him now ?

    No one knows how Dalton will perform the rest of his career, but right now, this particular Bengal fan is real glad we have him and not Palmer.

  53. @ ‘noquickreactionshere’ says……

    ……he’s going to keep that team competetive, but will struggle against strong defences’……

    ===============================

    Sure he’ll struggle against strong defences.

    All QB’s struggle aginst strong defences, that’s why they’re strong defences……

  54. “they run from the truth like it’s the plague.”
    I can’t argue this but the fact that a Raiders fan said it has me LMAO!!!
    (Talk about the pot calling the kettle black, or should I say silver & black)

  55. Newsflash… Apparently the Colts have reservations about Manning and the Broncos have reservations about Tebow. If the Bengals really feel that way then why no QB in the draft? At least Dalton can tell his grandkids “I was the winning quarterback in the last pro-bowl ever played.”

  56. I think the only real people that should comment on Dalton are the true Bengal fans that watched him 16 games last year. They probably know more than anyone on whether or not this guy has it or not……..wait, make that 17 games……….he looked pretty confident in the Pro Bowl game too……lol.

  57. Why is there Jags fans commenting on this story considering they know exactly what they have with Gabbert. The green eyed monster of a jealous fan base with a first round bust at QB is starting to rear its ugly head.

  58. Let’s see… He had no running game, a bad line, a disappointing defense, and a rookie WR and STILL took his team to the playoffs!

    Typical Bengals hate story.

  59. You should always draft a player you have doubts about. Hmm at least the Bungles think so it seems.
    ====

    Big LOL here.

    How are those great drafts working out for your Jags?

  60. As a Bengals fan I have to say we had a qb with arm strength for 9 years but no heart and fire as he proved last year. While I admit aj made him look very good on some of his deep balls last year Dalton realized he had some issues throwing the deep ball last year and has been working in the offseason to improve it. Anyone who says he can’t throw an out route apparently got him confused with the previous qb who enjoyed throwing pick 6’s that way. It is too early to anoint him as a superstar but it’s also too early to call him a pennington. He is showing to be dedicated to improving his game and I am much happier to have him at qb than the guy who had all the “tools”

  61. I really have no opinion on Dalton as I haven’t watched him play much but I do take issue with Cosell’s reasoning as to why the organization may have reservations about him. The idea that a rocket launcher for an arm is all it takes to be a good QB is ridiculous. Cosell’s sole reasoning as to why he believed RG3 would be a better pro QB than Luck was based on their arm. If that were all it took to be a great QB then Kyle Boller would be in the HOF. Dalton can make all the throws and that’s all that matters.

  62. i think this is BS, which Jay Gruden said later. i think part of the reason his stats came down was the fact that Benson & the running game wasn’t the threat it was suppose to be & defenses started to shift towards more pass coverage.

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