Andy Dalton

Saints To Sign Andy Dalton

Andy Dalton has found his next home in the NFL. The veteran is signing with the Saints on a one-year contract worth up to $6MM, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter (Twitter link). The deal includes $3MM in guaranteed money. 

[RELATED: Bears Sign QB Siemian]

The 34-year-old has settled into life as a backup after nine years as the starter in Cincinnati. He held the No. 2 job in Dallas in 2020, though he made nine starts as a result of injuries to Dak Prescott. He went 4-5 in that stretch, tossing 14 touchdowns and eight interceptions. That was followed by another one-year contract, this time in Chicago.

Dalton was named the starter for the Bears last April, though the team drafted Justin Fields later that month. The former ended up making six starts in the Windy City, putting up almost identical passing stats to his time the year before. With Fields having taken over as the QB of the present and future by the end of the year, though, it became clear Dalton would be on his way out.

In New Orleans, the TCU alum will replace Trevor Siemian, who recently joined the Bears. The Saints have re-signed Jameis Winston as their starter, but his injury history could open the door to playing time for Dalton. If that ends up happening, it would continue his recent streak of getting notable snaps despite spending long stretches as a backup. At a minimum, the three-time Pro Bowler is in line to extend his career for one more season.

NFL COVID List Updates: 12/23/21

We’ve compiled a list of players who were placed or activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list today. In some instances, players activated from the list remain on IR:

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Washington Football Team

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/17/21

Today’s minor moves:

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Los Angeles Rams

New Orleans Saints

  • Activated from Reserve/COVID-19 List: RB Mark Ingram

New York Giants

Washington Football Team

Evaluating Steelers’ 2022 In-House QB Options

After 18 years in the National Football League, it’s sounding more and more likely that the 2021-22 season will be Ben Roethlisberger‘s last. Over the last few years, Pittsburgh has taken stabs at potential replacements for Roethlisberger, usually utilizing late-round draft picks in hopes of molding a young prospect into a starter. But Roethlisberger potentially putting an end to his career when the season concludes places a lot more pressure on the Steelers to come up with a solution.

The easiest solution is to use the materials you already have. Pittsburgh currently has two quarterbacks on the active roster behind Big Ben and one on the injured reserve. Former first round pick Dwayne Haskins and Joshua Dobbs, currently on IR, both have contracts that expire at the end of the season, but it’s easier to have contract discussions with players already in the building than not.

Mason Rudolph is the team’s current primary backup. Rudolph beat out Dobbs for the second quarterback job and took over as the team’s starter in 2019 when Roethlisberger was ruled out for the season after an elbow surgery. Rudolph went 5-3 as the Steelers’ starter before getting benched for Devlin Hodges after struggling against a winless Bengals team. He completed 62% of his passes for 1,765 yards and threw 13 touchdowns to 9 interceptions on the year. Before the 2021 season, Rudolph signed a one-year extension, pushing his free agency back until after the 2022 season. Rudolph has appeared in one game this year, filling in as Roethlisberger was held out with COVID-19. In a game that resulted in a tie with the winless Lions, Rudolph completed 30 out of 50 pass attempts for 242 yards, throwing 1 touchdown and 1 interception.

Haskins was taken in the 2019 NFL Draft with the 15th overall pick by the Washington Football Team. He saw some game time for Washington in two games in the first 8 weeks of his rookie year, but earned his first start in Week 9 after the season’s original starter, Case Keenum, could not play with a concussion. Haskins took over the offense for every game but one for the rest of the season as he missed Week 17 with an ankle injury. Haskins retained the starting job to begin the 2020 season, but was benched in a Week 5 game against the Rams. He returned to the field when new starter Alex Smith left the game in Week 14 with an injury. Haskins started the next two games before being benched once again, this time for Taylor Heinicke. Haskins was released the next day due to some controversies with breaking COVID-19 protocols and not meeting the team’s standards off the field. In two years of play, Haskins completed 60% of his passes for 2,804 yards, throwing 12 touchdowns to 14 interceptions.

There are plenty of different directions Pittsburgh could go to replace Roethlisberger should this be his final season. While they haven’t quite proven to be world-beaters, Rudolph and Haskins do provide the Steelers with workable options that are already in the building. If the Steelers decide that they don’t think they can win a Super Bowl with the talent currently in their QB room, they’ll be sure to explore some options via free agency, trade, and the 2022 NFL Draft.

If the likes of Pitt’s Kenny Pickett, Ole Miss’s Matt Corral, North Carolina’s Sam Howell, or Liberty’s Malik Willis don’t pique the Steelers’ interest, Pittsburgh may look into a short-term free agent rental as they have in the past with quarterbacks Michael Vick and Bruce Gradkowski. Quarterbacks Jameis Winston, Andy Dalton, and Teddy Bridgewater are some of the bigger names set to hit the market this offseason that could delay the Steelers’ need to draft a quarterback until some more attractive prospects potentially surface in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Pittsburgh could also trade, as they did for Dobbs, with a number of quarterbacks rumored to be available for a price. Texans’ quarterback Deshaun Watson is obviously the most available option, due to a league investigation that could result in disciplinary action. 49ers’ quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has been rumored to be available due to the expected emergence of 2021’s No. 3 overall draft pick, Trey Lance. Garoppolo is not known to be flashy, but has still accomplished a 30-13 record as a starter in the NFL. Two other veterans that have shown a little frustration with their current squads and may be open to a trade are Seattle’s Russell Wilson and Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers.

While Steelers’ management is certainly preoccupied right now with making the playoffs in a wild AFC, they will have much to consider when the season comes to an end. Whoever ends up under center for the Steelers in Week 1 of the 2022-23 NFL season, it will certainly be a change of pace for the franchise if the jersey doesn’t have fourteen letters across the top.

Bears To Start Andy Dalton In Week 13

Justin Fields practiced this week, but the Bears are keeping Andy Dalton in their starting lineup for the time being. The 11th-year passer is set to start against the Cardinals, Matt Nagy said Friday. Nick Foles will be Dalton’s backup.

Nagy has said Fields will return to Chicago’s lineup when he’s healthy. The first-rounder logged three practices this week but each came in a limited capacity. This will lead to Dalton making a second straight start.

Sunday will be Dalton’s fourth start this season. Chicago is 2-1 in games Dalton starts, though the team’s Week 2 win over Cincinnati featured Fields replacing an injured Dalton midgame. Despite being proclaimed the Bears’ season-opening starter throughout the offseason, Dalton did not get his job back upon returning. He eventually returned to the lineup because of a Fields rib injury in Week 11. Foles has not taken a snap this season.

Dalton, 34, sports a 64% completion rate — compared to Fields’ 58% mark — and is coming off a 300-yard game on Thanksgiving, in a narrow Bears win over the Lions. With Fields having progressed to limited work, this might be Dalton’s last chance at auditioning for another gig in 2022. The longtime Bengals QB1’s Bears deal expires at season’s end. Foles’ contract runs through the 2022 season.

Bears’ Matt Nagy: Rumors Of Firing Are “Not Accurate”

Earlier today, former Chicago Sun-Times journalist Mark Konkol reported that Thanksgiving will mark Matt Nagy‘s final game as head coach (via For his part, Nagy says “that is not accurate,” (Twitter link via Kevin Fishbain of The Athletic). 

My focus is on these players and Detroit, and that’s it,” Nagy said (via’s Kevin Seifert). “That’s my job as a head coach and a leader, is to do that. These players have been amazing. They’ve been great. You have this quick turnaround after a loss like [Sunday’s to the Ravens], and now here you go. The only thing we can do is focus on the now and do everything we can. Thursday is going to be here quickly.

Still, Nagy says that he has not received any assurances from owner George McCaskey or GM Ryan Pace this week. Left to fend off the rumors by himself, Nagy claims that he won’t be distracted by the speculation.

We all have our own decisions as to how we do things, and I think this whole entire time, for me and for ownership, we’ve had great communication..[We’re] focused on Detroit. That’s what it is,” said the head coach.

After dropping five straight, the Bears are 3-7 and en route to a lost season. It’s a sharp drop from Nagy’s first 12-4 season at the helm, or even his back-to-back 8-8 campaigns. Assuming no decision has been made yet, a win on Thursday could help cool down the hot seat. On that note, Nagy also confirmed that the Bears will start Andy Dalton while Justin Fields recovers from his rib injury.

Injury Notes: Fields, Saints, Seahawks

It sounds like Andy Dalton will be back in the lineup for the Bears on Thursday night. The veteran quarterback is expected to get the start for Chicago later this week, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport (via Twitter).

Rookie Justin Fields is currently dealing with a rib injury, thrusting Dalton back into the starting lineup. The 34-year-old has barely seen the field since starting Chicago’s first two games. Since then, Dalton has appeared in two contests, completing 12 of his 24 pass attempts for 209 yards and two touchdowns.

Fortunately, it sounds like it’s more of a timing thing for Fields than anything else. The rookie spent the day undergoing more testing on his rib injury, but the turnaround time will ultimately keep Fields out of the lineup. Rapoport adds that the young QB has “been making major strides,” and it sounds like he’ll be back for the Bears before long. Fields has started eight of his 10 games this season, throwing four touchdowns vs. eight interceptions.

More injury notes from around the NFL:

  • Saints tight end Adam Trautman had a career day yesterday, but it came at a cost. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports (via Twitter) that Trautman suffered a sprained MCL that will keep him sidelined for the next four to six weeks. Presumably, the former third-round pick will end up seeing a stint on the injured reserve. Trautman had a standout game on Sunday against the Eagles, finishing with five catches for 58 yards and one touchdown.
  • Saints defensive back C.J. Gardner-Johnson landed on injured reserve a few weeks back, but it doesn’t sound like he’ll be sidelined for much more than the three required weeks. Rapoport tweets that Garden-Johnson’s expected recovery time from his foot injury is only three to four weeks. The 23-year-old started each of the Saints first seven games this season.
  • Saints quarterback Jameis Winston underwent surgery on his ACL earlier this month, but ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler tweets that the procedure “did not include an MCL repair.” While there was damage to the MCL, doctors believe the ligament was still strong enough to heal on its own.
  • Seahawks rookie cornerback Tre Brown is likely done for the season, as Pete Carroll acknowledged that Brown will likely require season-ending knee surgery. “This is just the day after and it looks like surgery is imminent,” Carroll said (h/t Charean Williams of “Yeah, so he would be [done for the year].” The fourth-round pick has gotten into five games (three starts) this season, collecting 10 tackles and one pass defended.

Nagy: Andy Dalton Is Starter When Healthy

Andy Dalton returned to practice Wednesday, going through the Bears’ workout in a limited capacity. And Matt Nagy has not changed his depth chart at quarterback.

The player the Bears promised would begin the season as their starter will remain so going forward, once he returns to full strength. Dalton suffered a knee contusion in Chicago’s Week 2 win over Cincinnati.

In regards to the depth chart with them, Andy is the 1, Justin’s the 2, Nick is the 3,” Nagy said of his Dalton-Justin FieldsNick Foles depth chart (via’s Field Yates, on Twitter).

Although Dalton’s injury moved Fields into the lineup, he trudged through an abysmal day in Cleveland. The No. 11 overall pick took nine sacks and completed 6 of 20 passes. First-round rookies rarely give jobs back after ascending to staring roles; Mitchell Trubisky moved into Chicago’s starting lineup in Week 5 of his rookie year and made every subsequent start in 2017. Fields’ performance may have opened the door for Dalton to stay in the picture. Fields was also uneven in his debut against the Bengals, following Dalton’s injury.

After suffering a right thumb injury, Fields practiced fully Wednesday. Foles is not on Chicago’s injury report but does not appear to have re-entered the equation for a possible starting role. The trade candidate remains in a third-string position to begin his age-32 season.

Nagy also indicated the Bears have had conversations about their play-calling role, though no decision has been made. Chicago ranks last in total yards and 31st in points through three games. Nagy gave OC Bill Lazor play-calling responsibilities amid a swoon last season, and the Bears — albeit against favorable opposition — made a late-season run to reach the playoffs. Nagy took back the play-calling reins this offseason. Lazor was Dalton’s OC in Cincinnati from 2017-18 and his position coach in 2016.

Bears To Start Justin Fields

The Bears will start Justin Fields on Sunday, head coach Matt Nagy announced (Twitter link via Field Yates of The rookie will start in place of the injured Andy Dalton with Nick Foles serving as the No. 2 quarterback. 

This will be a temporary arrangement, according to Nagy. “When Andy is healthy,” the head coach said. “He’s our starter.”

Dalton was knocked out of Sunday’s win over the Bengals and an MRI confirmed a bone bruise in his knee. That shouldn’t shelve the veteran for too long, though he hasn’t been stellar so far this year. His performance in the Week 1 loss to the Rams was rough and, even though he looked a bit better on Sunday, Fields’ upside cannot be ignored.

Before exiting, Dalton completed nine of his 11 passes for 56 yards and one touchdown. Meanwhile, Fields completed both of his pass attempts and rushed for a touchdown in Week 1. In fairness, the first-round pick wasn’t as strong this past weekend — he completed only six of his 13 pass attempts for 60 yards with one TD and one fumble.

Despite Nagy’s assertion, a strong showing from Fields could change quickly. If he takes the helm, he’ll be just the fifth Round 1 QB to be the primary starter of his club since 2011, following Patrick Mahomes, Jake Locker, Johnny Manziel, and Paxton Lynch.

Latest On Bears QB Andy Dalton

Bears quarterback Andy Dalton was knocked out of yesterday’s win over the Bengals, and’s Ian Rapoport confirmed (on Twitter) that an MRI confirmed a bone bruise in the veteran’s knee. No official determination has been made about Dalton’s status for next weekend’s game against the Browns.

Dalton wasn’t great during the Bears’ Week 1 loss to the Rams, but he looked a bit better on Sunday. Before exiting with his injury, the veteran completed nine of his 11 passes for 56 yards and one touchdown. Meanwhile, after Justin Fields completed both of his pass attempts and rushed for a touchdown in Week 1, the first-round pick completed only six of his 13 pass attempts for 60 yards yesterday. The rook also threw an interception and had a fumble.

The Bears depth chart seems a bit unpredictable at the moment, and coach Matt Nagy didn’t do much to help the matter this afternoon. When asked to reveal who would start Week 3 if both QBs are healthy, the head coach gave a head-scratching answer.

“That’s something that I’m not going to get into with scheme,” Nagy said (via Andrew Siciliano of NFL Network on Twitter).

Later, a team official clarified that Nagy had misinterpreted the question and that Dalton would remain the starter, if healthy (via ESPN’s Jeff Dickerson).