During the lead-up to free agency, NBCSportsWashington.com will evaluate a handful of pro QBs the Redskins could acquire for the 2019 season. Up today: Andy Dalton.
Age: 31 years old
Key career stats: The Bengals starting quarterback since being drafted in 2011, Dalton has four playoff appearances and three Pro Bowl trips in eight seasons. While he's never won a playoff game for Cincinnati, he has a career 62 percent completion percentage with 188 touchdowns and 150 interceptions. He's averaged more than 230 yards passing in 120 career starts, and Dalton has won 27 more games than he's lost.
2019 contract situation: Carries a $16 million cap number for 2019 with none of that money guaranteed. In 2020, the final year of his current deal, that cap number gets near $18 million. With no guaranteed cash left on the deal, the Bengals could release Dalton with no cap hit.
Analysis: Dalton has been the best quarterback in Cincinnati since at least Carson Palmer, and maybe since Boomer Esiason. The stats have never been pretty, but Dalton has won a lot of games for the Bengals and been a steadying force on their offense.
He found his best success when Jay Gruden was his offensive coordinator and play caller, and for the first time in his NFL career, Dalton will have a new head coach. Zac Robinson comes to the Bengals saying all the right things about keeping Dalton and adding weapons to his arsenal, but Cincy also holds the 11th overall pick and could add a much cheaper rookie option at QB.
Robinson might want a fresh start with a new quarterback, and that could mean taking a rookie at 11. Kyler Murray and Dwayne Haskins seem likely to be gone, but what about Drew Lock or Daniel Jones? That could get interesting.
Still, Cincinnati needs to release Dalton before he could possibly be reunited with Gruden. Even if the Bengals draft a QB at 11, it's still possible they keep Dalton. At $16 million for 2019, Dalton's salary is manageable, and Jones or Lock are the types of prospects that might be best served with a year on the roster with a veteran QB.
The Bengals say Dalton is staying. As Rich Tandler famously said, don't listen to what they say, watch what they do. If Cincy cuts Dalton, then the Redskins might be an interesting landing spot, but in all likelihood, Washington couldn't afford the Red Rocket.
Other QB Countdowns
MORE REDSKINS NEWS:
- Complete Overhaul?: Chances 'Skins land QB and Antonio Brown
- Bad Reviews: Kyler Murray skewered for Combine interviews
- Defenders are Available: A look at Collins and Mosley