Some players simply mean more to their team than you might realize, but is Andy Dalton one of them? It depends on who you talk to. But we are all about to learn more, as Dalton exited the Sunday game against the Pittsburgh Steelers with a thumb injury.
How It Happened
Dalton had done an excellent job and drove the Cincinnati Bengals down the field their opening possession. With the ball at the five yard line, the play call was for a flip pass to the running back. But instead of the ball going into the hands of Giovani Bernard, it was intercepted by the Steelers defensive end in Stephon Tuitt. Dalton went for the tackle and that was when he hurt his thumb. Dalton left the game completing three passes out of five attempts with the one interception.
Andy Dalton is backed up at the quarterback position by the relatively unknown A.J. McCarron. Many fans might recognize that name from his college career as the quarterback of the Alabama Crimson Tide. But he has done very little in the NFL. He was drafted in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL draft. Coming into the game he had completed three passes out of four attempts in the NFL for a total of 22 yards. With the rival Steelers on the other side it will be difficult for the Bengals to overcome being down their primary quarterback. This should mean that we should see even more from Bernard and from Jeremy Hill as they should ease McCarron into the game. But he does have elite talent around him with A.J. Green at wideout and Tyler Eifert as a strong tight end. It will be interesting to see what exactly comes out of this game for the Bengals, but surely they want to win as that would give them the AFC North crown.