Andy Dalton fell to the 2nd round and was the 5th quarterback off the board in the 2011 NFL Draft because of his lack of arm strength. Dalton showed as a rookie that he has enough arm strength to get by, leading the Bengals to the playoffs with a record of 9-7. However, according to NFL Films’ Greg Cosell, the Bengals do have some doubts about Dalton and say there are some things they’re not comfortable doing with him.
The Bengals obviously refuted the report immediately, but that’s to be expected. That doesn’t mean it’s not true, but it also doesn’t mean it is true. Cosell really has no reason to lie. Dalton played well to start last season, completing 61.5% of his passes for an average of 6.6 YPA, and 12 touchdowns to 7 interceptions, leading the Bengals to a 6-2 record.
However, in the 2nd half of the season, teams seemed to catch on and the Bengals went just 3-5 as Dalton completed just 54.6% of his passes for 6.6 YPA, and 8 touchdowns to 6 interceptions. The Bengals also didn’t beat a playoff team all last year, going 0-8. Against a tougher schedule and with the league catching on to his game, Dalton could have a down season this year. I think he’s one of the most overrated quarterbacks in the league.
There was a time when Colt McCoy had a decent rookie year, but teams caught on eventually and now he’s a backup. Dalton was a similar player coming out of school. Even if Cosell didn’t actually hear that the Bengals have doubts about Dalton, I would agree with his assessment that Dalton’s lack of arm strength could be a legitimate concern going forward. Cosell knows his stuff and I called Dalton a “backup type prospect” coming out of TCU, a statement that has yet to be completely proven wrong.