Here’s a pretty good indication of how confident Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton is these days: shortly before his game-winning touchdown pass to A.J. Green in the Bengals’ 28-24 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, the CBS cameras caught Dalton smiling prior to receiving the snap.
“I mean, we had a good look for what I saw, and I guess I didn’t realize I was smiling, but it’s one of those things,” Dalton said. “When you get those opportunities, you’ve got to make that play. And we were able to make it. I was smiling for a while after that.”
Dalton, a fifth-year pro, has completed 61 of 92 passes (66.3 completion percentage) for 866 yards, eight touchdowns and an interception. His 383-yard performance against the Ravens caught Chiefs defensive coordinator Bob Sutton’s eye, too.
“I think Andy Dalton is probably playing the best football he’s played,” Sutton said. “He’s very efficient, not turning the ball over. He’s done a great job in these first three games here for them.”
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That said, it will be up the Chiefs’ strong pass rush — led by Justin Houston — to pressure Dalton if they hope to put his recent hot streak to the end.
Dalton, however, knows this.
“Yeah, you know that you’ve got to get the ball out of your hands, you can’t hold onto it longer than you usually do because the longer that they’re rushing, the more chance of them being able to get to you,” Dalton said. “So you’ve got to be smart with what you’re doing and understand where they’re coming from.”