Bears enact Andy Dalton ‘QB1’ days after he noticed Chicago told him he would be the team’s starter

While he took a backup job in Dallas in 2020, Andy Dalton never wavered in his belief that he was still an early-caliber NFL quarterback. And while his time in Dallas wasn’t a Cinderella story, Dalton played well enough in relief for Dak Prescott to earn another shot at starting an NFL team. On the league’s New Year’s Eve, the veteran quarterback struck a one-year, $ 10 million deal with the Bears, who on Thursday saw former starter Mitchell Trubisky sign a one-year deal. year to become Josh. Allen’s endorsement in Buffalo. And while the Bears have Super Bowl LII MVP Nick Foles on their roster, Chicago has already given the Red Rifle the keys to offense.

“They told me I was the incumbent” Dalton said Last Thursday. “That was one of the reasons I wanted to come here.”

Almost a week after Dalton pulled the curtain down on his negotiations with Chicago and his plan for the future, the team’s official social media account had no qualms saying the veteran will lead them to 2021. Of course, this isn’t exactly Coming straight from coach Matt Nagy’s mouth, but all signs seem to point to Dalton being the Bears leader in center.

While Trubisky won six of his nine regular-season starts last season, the Bears deemed him expendable. In Dalton, the Bears are getting a three-time Pro Bowler that helped the Bengals reach the playoffs five years in a row from 2011-15. Dalton, the Bengals’ second all-time passing leader, was released after the Bengals went just 2-11 with him under center in 2019. Cincinnati replaced Dalton with Joe Burrow, who showed great promise until that a knee injury prematurely ended his rookie season.

Dalton’s time as Prescott’s backup lasted only five games; He replaced the Cowboys franchise quarterback after Prescott suffered a season-ending injury against the Giants in Week 5. And while he was able to help the Cowboys defeat the Giants, Dalton missed two games after suffer a concussion and test positive for COVID-19. .

When Dalton returned in Week 11 after a bye week, Dallas was 2-7 and in the midst of a four-game losing streak. Despite his murky position, Dalton helped the Cowboys win four of their next six games to get back into playoff contention by entering the Cowboys’ season finale against the Giants. However, Dallas fell short in New York and missed the playoffs for the second year in a row. Dalton finished the season with 2,170 yards with 14 touchdowns and eight interceptions. His completion rate of 64.9% was Dalton’s highest since 2015.

In Chicago, Dalton will be flanked on offense by wide receiver Allen Robinson, running back David Montgomery, tight end Jimmy Graham and an offensive line that received a solid 2020 season from center Cody Whitehair. Dalton is also supported by a talented Bears defense led by linebackers Roquan Smith, Danny Trevathan, Khalil Mack and safety Eddie Jackson.

Look for the Bears to invest in your offensive line for the next two months. In fact, three of our four CBS Sports NFL draft experts currently have the Bears pick an offensive lineman with the 20th pick.

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