Bears, Bengals Discuss Andy Dalton Trade

Teams cannot technically contact free agent quarterbacks at the Combine, but discussions regarding passers on the trade market are fair game. The Bears appear to have begun investigating one of them.

The Bengals and Bears have been in contact about Andy Dalton, Paul Dehner Jr. of The Athletic notes (subscription required). Chicago is set to pursue a veteran passer to compete with Mitchell Trubisky; Dalton would certainly qualify as competition.

A nine-year Bengal, Dalton was demoted last season and is likely set to see his job go to Joe Burrow come April. The Bengals are willing to work with the contract-year quarterback on a trade. With the Bears having a quality defense that led their 2018 team to the playoffs, they may well qualify as a destination for a passer looking for a second chance.

Dalton is due a $17.5MM base salary in the final year of what has become a bargain-basement franchise-quarterback contract. The Bengals signed Dalton to a six-year, $96MM extension back in August 2014 and never extended it. One GM said the Bengals could fetch a second- or third-round pick for the 32-year-old quarterback, per The Athletic’s Lindsay Jones. The Bears hold two second-round picks but no first- or third-round selections, with 2018’s Khalil Mack trade reshaping Chicago’s 2020 draft.

The Patriots have also come up as a potential Dalton suitor, with some around the league envisioning that fit as a chess move for the Pats if Tom Brady departs. With that prospect looking likelier, the Dalton trade price could rise. The Bengals want to resolve this situation soon, but Dehner notes Brady’s decision will halt matters on the quarterback market.

Although Dalton struggled without A.J. Green and behind one of the NFL’s worst offensive lines last season, the three-time Pro Bowl alternate finished as QBR’s No. 17 passer in 2018. Dalton’s best years came in the mid-2010s, amid a five-season Bengals playoff streak. He threw 33 touchdown passes in 2014 and had a 25-7 TD-INT ratio in 2015 (fifth in QBR) before a season-ending injury. The Bengals, whose offensive line and pass-catcher situations worsened in the years that followed, have not produced a winning record since and seem set to move on from their nine-year starter.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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29 comments on “Bears, Bengals Discuss Andy Dalton Trade

  1. unclemike1525

    Pace would be making a horrible mistake trading draft picks he doesn’t have for a QB who at best was mediocre. He’ll probably be a FA after the draft and if they really want 2 mediocre QB’s they can get him for free.

    • letmeclearmythroat74

      He’s better than your current QB … by a long shot … it will be a 3rd round pick

      • unclemike1525

        Except they don’t have a 3rd or a 4 th for that matter so it’s dead b4 it starts.

      • bencole

        Which would really have nothing to do with the price, because, assuming he is better, then there are others available that are better than Mitch also. Fact is the Bengals will want to get that money off their books and it’s a lot. Bears have only about $20 million in cap space, which makes this fit make no sense in the first place. But the Bears aren’t using all their cap space and giving up one of their few top draft picks just to get a veteran to compete with Mitch. And if you read the article, you’ll realize it won’t be a third, because the Bears don’t have a third. Maybe someone else pays that, but I’d be shocked if the Bears did.

        • crosseyedlemon

          Totally agree ben. The Bears can only afford to sign a QB for the same money Chase Daniels was getting. That would be in the $6-7MM range. Upgrading the OL should be more of a priority than overpaying Dalton to underachieve for a former OC (Lazor).

      • maximumvelocity

        No he’s not.

        Trubisky isn’t what he was drafted to be, but he’s already more accurate and less turnover prone. He’s also a far better athlete.

        Dalton is more fundamentally sound, and reads defenses better, but that’s it. He’d be a terrible decision if he’s to be the starter.

  2. axisofhonor25

    I know this may not happen but the fact they at least had the conversation gives me a bit of hope.

    • The bears oline was awful last season, as you see in the article Andy dalton is a bad player when his oline is bad…thinking trubisky was the only problem and then moving draft capital that could be used to improve a below average oline would be an awful football move, your hope should be tempered

  3. thurmanmerman33

    Dalton has always reminded me of an old Mitch Trubisky. Would be great if these two teamed up and Mitch mentored him. Would be a great way for Mitch to wrap up his career.

  4. afsooner02

    He’s not worth anything more than a 7th round pick. Although he is better than their current QB….but a wet paper bag is better than Trubisky

  5. metsie1

    Why it was just the season before last that Bears fans were lecturing me about how Mitch Trubisky was “the best QB in the NFC North”. Some nut job wrote that it wasn’t even close! Now one double doink and playoff season later they are looking into has been or never was guys like the limp red rifle. On second thought, I really want them to keep Mitch for the giggles he brings.

    • Rondon

      The only thing worse than them is the hindsight whining of a “never was” junior GM.

    • captainchaos55

      I get Dalton hasn’t been flashy but to say he’s a has been or limp red rifle isn’t fair. Dalton was and still is an above average QB. He took the Bengals to playoffs 5 times. I know they didn’t do well once there but still did. That was not entirely his fault. Trubisky, Darnold, Winston, Newton, Mayfield, Lock, Carr , Fitzpatrick and maybe Cousins. All QBs I’d take Dalton over. Also, if it was Dalton that was traded to Tennessee instead of Tannehill , I think he would have done about the same having Henry and that offense. When you compare his raw statistics against any of these guys…he’s right there with them and better than most.

      • letmeclearmythroat74

        Totally agree Chaos… Dalton gets a bad rap for being with a bad organization. If he came up with another team I think it would be a different conversation…

  6. $crewBaLL

    bears are better off bringing in Mariota Hes a upgrade over Mitch (when healthy). Competition in camp for the starting position. Save your draft picks.

  7. Michael Chaney

    Dalton and a 3rd or 4th rounder for a 2nd rounder. Since the Bears don’t have a 3rd, you’d have to get creative and Dalton isn’t worth a second rounder on his own.

    The alternative would be Dalton on his own in exchange for like a 4 and a 6 or something like that, but I’m just spitballing.

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