For good and bad, 2013 was the year of Andy Dalton when it came to the Cincinnati Bengals. In spite of some big injuries, a top-tier defense, the magnificence of AJ Green, the emergence of Marvin Jones, and the excitement every time Gio Bernard got his hands on the ball, Andy Dalton is the perpetual straw that stirs (or spills) the drink. Let’s take a quick look at some of his numbers from the 2013 regular season.
The establishing of Good Andy and Bad Andy is reflected in a number of his statistical splits, a big one being the disparity of Dalton’s performance when pressured and/or blitzed and vice versa. According to Pro Football Focus, Dalton recorded 480 dropbacks classified as No Pressure, resulting in a line of:
316 of 465 (68 completion percentage, plus 15 runs), 3,636 yards (7.8 ypa), 30 TDs, 14 INTs, 0 sacks, 100.3 QB rating, +11.2 PFF grade.
In 160 snaps Under Pressure, Dalton recorded a line of:
47 of 121 (38.8 completion percentage—barf—plus 10 runs), 658 yards (5.4 ypa), 3 TDs, 6 INTs, 29 sacks, 44.7 QB rating, -4.3 PFF grade.
If looking at Dalton’s performance specifically when defenses brought extra rushers, in his 425 dropbacks When Not Blitzed:
245 of 387 (63.3 completion percentage, plus 21 runs), 2,839 yards (7.3 ypa), 19 TDs, 11 INTs, 17 sacks, 89.9 QB rating, +13.7 PFF grade.
On Dalton’s 215 dropbacks When Blitzed:
118 of 199 (59.3 completion percentage, plus 4 runs), 1,455 yards (7.3 ypa), 14 TDs, 9 INTs, 12 sacks, 86.6 QB rating, -6.8 PFF grade.
When comparing specifically the pressure stats around the league, Dalton had the second-lowest percentage of dropbacks under pressure (25 percent), with only Peyton Manning facing less. This is not only high praise for the Bengals offensive line/pass blocking, but also a huge positive/necessity for the offense, as Dalton’s 38.8 completion percentage under pressure was the lowest in the NFL. (His accuracy percentage of 57.3 was 21 of 27 among QBs with at least 50 percent of their team’s dropbacks, sandwiched between Tom Brady [20th] and Eli Manning [22nd].)
Home and Away
Fortunately for the Bengals, they’re at home to open the playoffs. Aside from the much-publicized 8-0 record in the Jungle this season, Dalton’s home splits are far more impressive at home as opposed to on the road, even including the four-interception performance against the Ravens in Week 17 (which also included his worst play of the season).
Dalton at Home (8-0): 169 of 266 (63.5 completion percentage), 2,067 yards (7.77 ypa), 20 TDs, 9 INTs, 98.4 QB rating.
Dalton on the Road (3-5): 194 of 320 (60.6 completion percentage), 2,229 yards (6.97 ypa), 13 TDs, 11 INTs, 80.8 QB rating.
’13 Dalton vs ’05 Palmer
I’m hoping to do a more in-depth comparison of Dalton’s season and Palmer’s 2005 campaign sometime this offseason, but with Dalton breaking a few of Palmer’s major passing records this season, even amidst all of the up-and-down performances and criticism, let’s take a quick look at how each of their best seasons stack up on the basic stat forefront.
’05 Palmer (11-5): 345 of 509 (67.8 completion percentage), 3,836 yards (7.54 ypa), 32 TDs, 12 INTs, 101.1 QB rating.
’13 Dalton (11-5): 363 of 586 (61.9 completion percentage), 4,296 yards (7.33 ypa), 33 TDs, 20 INTs, 88.8 QB rating.