Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton has taken a lot of criticism in the wake of his disastrous performance in Cincinnati’s playoff loss. But former Bengals quarterback Boomer Esiason says that criticism has gone overboard.
Esiason told the Bengals’ website that he views Dalton as a very good young quarterback who deserves support, not criticism.
“I never had a season like he had this year. He’ll be fine,’ Esiason said. “The trajectory is like this, 9-7, 10-6, 11-5, 22 touchdowns, 27 touchdowns, 33 touchdowns. The guy is a really good player. Everyone just has to calm down.”
Esiason is trying to be nice, but the notion that he never had a season like Dalton had in 2013 is fairly ridiculous. Yes, it’s true that Esiason never threw for 4,293 yards and 33 touchdowns, as Dalton did in 2013, but 4,293 yards and 33 touchdowns in the passing environment of 2013 isn’t as impressive as what Esiason did in the 1980s. Esiason led the league in passer rating and was named league MVP in 1988, and he was among the best handful of quarterbacks in the NFL for several years. Dalton has never been close to being the top quarterback in the NFL.
Still, the Bengals have made very clear that they view Dalton as their franchise quarterback for years to come. Whether Cincinnati fans agree with Esiason or not, Dalton is their quarterback.