The End of an Era – Cincinnati Bengals release Quarterback Andy Dalton
Updated: May 9, 2020
Lead Author: Game Warden
Co-Authors: Skyline Willy and Midwest Mike
Cincinnati Bengals fans knew this bittersweet day would come. After 9 seasons, Andy Dalton’s time in Cincinnati has come to an end. On April 30, 2020, the Cincinnati Bengals released quarterback Andy Dalton, clearing up $17.7M in salary cap space.
The Red Rifle’s NFL career began when the Bengals selected the TCU Quarterback in the second-round of the 2011 NFL Draft. With Carson Palmer’s departure to the Oakland Raiders, it was clear that Dalton would be the new franchise quarterback. With his new teammate, AJ Green, a first-round pick of the Bengals in the 2011 NFL Draft, Bengals fans knew the pair would be a threat on the field for years to come.
In his first season with the Bengals, Andy Dalton led the Cincinnati Bengals to the Playoffs with a 9-7 record. Despite a loss to Baltimore Ravens in the 2011 Wild Card Round, the rookie QB had proven his role as a team leader. Dalton would go on to lead the Cincinnati Bengals to 5 consecutive trips to the NFL Playoffs from 2011-15. While Who Dey nation never got the result we wanted when it came to the playoffs, Andy Dalton had a solid career in Cincinnati.
Notable Andy Dalton Career Highlights & Statistics (2011-19)
· All Time Bengals Leader in touchdown passes (204) and completions (2,757)
· 70-61-2 career record with the Bengals – second best by a quarterback with at least 10
· 3x Pro Bowl Selection (2011, 2014, 2016)
· Holds single-season franchise record in yards passing (4,293 yards in 2013)
· Holds single-season franchise record in touchdowns (33 touchdowns in 2013)
· Holds single-season franchise record in passer rating (106.3 in 2015)
- Led the AFC in passer rating in 2015
· Holds franchise record for career passer rating (87.5)
· Holds franchise record of games with 300 yards passing (28)
· Holds franchise record for game-winning drives (24)
· Only quarterback to lead the Bengals to five consecutive playoff berths (2011-15)
· Threw for over 3,000 yards every year from 2011-15
· Led the Bengals to a 9-0 start in 2015
Given the impressive list of franchise records held by Dalton, it is clear that Andy Dalton made an impact on the field. Personally, my favorite Andy Dalton memory will always be the game against the Seattle Seahawks in 2015 where he led the Bengals back from a 4th quarter 24-7 deficit to a 27-24 OT win (the second biggest comeback in Bengals’ franchise history). I was at this game and remember going crazy in the stands. It was the best comeback I had ever seen and will always be a great memory.
Despite the naysayers and what they have to say, Andy had a successful career in Cincinnati, both on and off the field. Andy and his wife, JJ, were very active in the community with through their foundation, Andy & JJ Dalton Foundation. The Cincinnati community will be forever grateful for Andy’s impact off the field.
As the Andy Dalton era ends in Cincinnati and a New Dey begins with the 2020 No.1 Overall Draft Selection, Joe Burrow, Andy should have no problem finding another job as an NFL quarterback and as a starter at that. The 32 year old will be entering his 10th season and is a proven leader. With the right supporting cast around him, the Red Rifle is a threat on the field and who knows, could potentially find his way back to the NFL Playoffs and achieve that first playoff win and more.