The Bengals released quarterback Andy Dalton on Thursday in a move that came after the team made an effort to trade their longtime starter.
The Bears were thought to be a potential landing spot, but they dealt for Nick Foles instead and Dalton was left with no other trade options as teams knew the Bengals would be taking Joe Burrow with the first overall pick.
“There were several different factors,” Dalton said, via the team’s website. “This year there were a good amount of quarterbacks that were available. I think it would have worked out differently if I had been a free agent when the new league year started. I was still under contact and that hurt me. I’m sure teams knew they were going to take a quarterback No. 1 and they would release me and there was no reason to rush into anything.”
Dalton said he was willing to talk about staying in Cincinnati, but had to “know one way or the other” what the plans were now that Burrow is officially with the team. The plans didn’t involve keeping Dalton and his $17.5 million salary, so he’s now a free agent ready to check out any options that might be available while remaining positive that everything is “going to work out” in the end.