Dalton had surgery to repair a torn right thumb ligament in late November and resumed throwing footballs at the beginning of February. His rehab process shouldn't have any impact on the process of installing a new offense under first-time head coach Zac Taylor, as the Bengals won't hold real practices until late May. The early stages of the offseason program will focus on learning a new playbook, in addition to the usual strength and conditioning work. Dalton has two seasons remaining on a team-friendly contract, but it won't come as any surprise if the Bengals try to find his successor during the 2019 NFL Draft. The 31-year-old quarterback was on pace for a 10-win, 34-touchdown season after Week 8 last year, but the Bengals fell apart once A.J. Green (toe) and then Dalton were injured.
Dalton seems to be on track in the rehab process after having surgery in late November to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb. There have been some murmurs about the Bengals trying to find a new quarterback for their new coaching staff, but director of player personnel Duke Tobin recently said Dalton will enter 2019 as the starter. With two seasons remaining on a team-friendly contract, the 31-year-old quarterback may push for some type of financial commitment to back up the supportive words. Dalton was one of the few bright spots for Cincinnati in 2018 and has been a regular presence at the team facility while rehabbing during the early portion of the offseason. NFL rules demand that he waits until April to receive the new playbook from head coach Zac Taylor and offensive coordinator Brian Callahan.
Bengals director of player personnel Duke Tobin suggested Dalton (thumb) will enter 2019 as the team's starting quarterback, Fletcher Page of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports. "We're very comfortable with Andy," Tobin said. "We think he's got a number of years left. We feel like we can win with him. But with any position group, we don't just throw away the whole draft board at a group just because we're satisfied with who we have."
An overhaul of the coaching staff has led to rumors of a possible change under center, but it's probably an easy decision to keep Dalton given that he has two seasons remaining on a team-friendly contract. This doesn't mean the Bengals won't explore options for a long-term upgrade, but it does mean there's an excellent chance Dalton will get the Week 1 start in 2019. Of course, he may not feel so great about the contract situation, with no guaranteed money remaining on his deal and a 2019 cap hit ($16.2 million) that ranks dead last among starting quarterbacks that aren't on a rookie contract (per overthecap.com). Working his way back from late-November thumb surgery, Dalton should have plenty of time to return to full strength before the Bengals start their offseason program in April under new head coach Zac Taylor.
Dalton underwent surgery Tuesday to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb and said he expects to be ready to for the Bengals' offseason program, Paul Dehner Jr. of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
The Bengals placed Dalton on injured reserve Monday, ending his season after 11 games. The 31-year-old completed 61.9 percent of his throws for 21 touchdowns, 11 interceptions and 7.0 yards per attempt, figures that all ranked in the middle to back end among all qualified passers. Jeff Driskel will step in as the Bengals' starting quarterback for the remainder of the campaign, but Dalton, who is under contract through the 2020 season, should reclaim the top spot on the depth chart once healthy next spring.
Coach Marvin Lewis relayed Monday that the Bengals' medical staff expects Dalton to fully recover from his thumb injury in advance of the 2019 season, Paul Dehner Jr. of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
In the meantime, Jeff Driskel will take over as the team's starting QB and by the time next season rolls around, Dalton's team context will no doubt have undergone some changes. While the Bengals have yet to specify the nature of Dalton's injury, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network indicates that the QB suffered torn ligaments in his thumb. It's not known at this time if it's an issue that will require surgery.
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|