The Bengals saw their first preseason action on Friday. They won the game but Andy Dalton’s play on the Bengals opening drive proved troubling.
The Bengals season kicked off on Friday with a game at home against the Buccaneers. The Week 1 preseason game serves as the first look at key players since the end of last season. One of the players in the spotlight was Andy Dalton. Dalton has been one of the most scrutinized Bengals for the duration of his career. The primary gripe of fans is that he has never been able to produce when it counts most. Unfortunately, his opening night performance did nothing to dispel those criticisms.
On the Bengals opening drive, Dalton methodically led the offense down the field. The offense was perfectly balanced with a mix of runs and short passes. On the drive, he connected with A.J. Green for gains of eight and thirteen yards, Tyler Eifert for four yards, and Brandon LaFell for another thirteen.
Dalton ended the night throwing for 38 yards on 4-of-5 passing. This seems like a pretty typical stat line for a starting quarterback, Week 1 of the preseason. However, the problem for Dalton was the one pass that wasn’t complete. With the Bengals on the Tampa Bay 5-yard line, Dalton attempted a pass to Brandon LaFell in the end zone. The pass was undercut by Vernon Hargreaves who made the interception. The promising drive was stalled dead in its tracks.
Even though it’s only preseason, this was the last thing fans wanted to see from Dalton. One could make the case that he still has to shake off the rust. It’s also possible that there was a miscommunication on the route. But, it…
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