With their futures likely tied together, it should come as no surprise that Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis is hopeful that quarterback Andy Dalton gets an extension.
“We are hopeful we can get a deal done that works and Andy can put it behind him,” Lewis told reporters on Tuesday, via the Cincinnati Enquirer. “He can get back focusing on football. He doesn’t have to go into the season and worry about this contract thing, every week someone is going to ask him a question … all those things that come into play later on. Let’s get it behind us.”
The Bengals have reached the playoffs in each of Dalton’s first three seasons, but have yet to win.
Dalton would become a unrestricted free agent at the end of next season if he is not signed to an extension.
Hue Jackson has taken over the offensive play calling in Cincinnati which should lead to fewer passes from Dalton. Critics of Dalton point to his high number of turnovers as hampering the Bengals. With Jackson expanding the run game, the Bengals will not need Dalton to force throws like he had a tendency to do in 2013.
Dalton set career highs with 4,296 yards passing and 33 touchdowns during the 2013 regular season. He also threw 20 interceptions and fumbled away the ball three times.
In the Bengals post season loss to San Diego the quarterback threw two interceptions and fumbled two other times, one of which was lost. In three playoff games he has six interceptions and three fumbles.