Andy Dalton isn’t sure what’s next for his NFL career, but he’s not dismissing the possibility that he stays with the Bengals. With less than a week to go before the Bengals take the podium – and, most likely, select LSU quarterback Joe Burrow – Dalton says there’s “a scenario” in which he could stay in Cincy.
“I truly believe they want what’s best for me, but I understand it’s a business, and you know how that goes,” Dalton told NFL Network. “With the first pick, if they take a quarterback like everyone expects, that could trigger something. There’s even a scenario where I go back there.”
Dalton served as the Bengals’ starter for years, right up until he was benched and replaced with rookie Ryan Finley midway through the 2019 season. Dalton took his job back later on, but he struggled – the veteran connected on just 57.9% of his passing attempts with seven touchdowns against six interceptions.
Ahead of his age-33 season, Dalton is likely on course to change jerseys. At one point, Dalton said he wanted to start in 2020. Ultimately, he may have to settle for a QB2 role, or wait until late in the offseason to see if an injury opens up a starting job. The former seems more likely, especially since training camp will probably be shortened or modified in some fashion.
For what it’s worth, the Bengals haven’t ruled out a future with Dalton either. If they do move forward with the vet, he’ll almost certainly have to agree to a trim on his $17.5MM base salary.
Dalton holds the Bengals’ all-time record with 204 career passing touchdowns. Unfortunately, he’s also three seasons removed from his best work.
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