Report Says Bengals Talked to Bears About Andy Dalton

Gene Chamberlain

It's not Instagram games being played by Derek Carr.

This time it's a real tangible report.

The Bears have been in touch with the Cincinnati Bengals about quarterback Andy Dalton.

Paul Dehner Jr., who wrote the last six years for the Cincinnati Enquirer and is a podcast host and writer for The Athletic, reported the contact between the teams.

 So it's a real name under consideration by the Bears for the second quarterback spot.

The Bears would have to trade for Dalton, unless they thought he was being released. By trading for Dalton they would have to not only give the Bengals trade compensation but would also have to take on Dalton's $17.7 million contract.

The Bengals are expected to get rid of Dalton because they'll draft LSU's Joe Burrow with the first pick of April's draft.

Dalton, who will be 33 in October, was the 35th player chosen in 2011, a second-round pick of the Bengals and has had a rocky road over the past three seasons.

The Bengals were 14-26 in his starts during those three seasons. He completed 60.3% of his throws for 62 touchdowns with 37 interceptions for an 84.2 a passer rating while averaging 6.8 yards an attempt.

In those same three NFL seasons, Trubisky completed 63.4%, had an 85.8 passer rating and threw 48 touchdown passes to 29 interceptions with 6.7 yards an attempt.

Dalton led the Bengals into the playoffs each of his first four seasons but they lost every playoff game. In his fifth season he had them in position possibly to make a good playoff run with a 10-3 record but suffered a thumb injury and missed the final four games. Ironically, they came the closest they ever did to winning a postseason game under Marvin Lewis with A.J. McCarron at quarterback as they fell to 18-16 to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The report by Dehner didn't say a trade was imminent or anything of this sort, just that the Bengals had been in contact with the Bears regarding Dalton.

Dalton has limited experience in an RPO offense like the Bears use, but the experience did come under current Bears offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, who was with Cincinnati from 2016-18. Lazor was Dalton's quarterback coach in 2016 with the Bengals when he achieved his second-highest passer rating (91.8) and yards per attempt (7.5). It was also the third and final year Dalton made the Pro Bowl.

The Bears have already said Mitchell Trubisky will be starter when this season begins, but a veteran who has had success elsewhere for a long time would be a welcome addition as someone who could push him or pick up the ball and run an attack if the offense is struggling.

Without experience in the offense, a trade would mean Dalton has to learn an entirely new offense. Over the years in Cincinnati he had to do this several times in the past, the last time under head coach Zac Taylor last season.The biggest obstacle for now for the Bears would have to be Dalton's contract but it is

The biggest obstacle for now for the Bears would have to be Dalton's contract but 2020 is the final year of his deal. So they could get him an extension to absorb some of the cash he's due as part of a prorated bonus and make 2020 more cap-friendly.

Twitter: BearDigest@BearsOnMaven

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