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Cincinnati Bengals Release Quarterback Andy Dalton

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When the Cincinnati Bengals drafted LSU quarterback Joe Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick last week, it was clear that Andy Dalton’s days were numbered.

On Thursday, the Bengals made it official, cutting ties with the all-time passing touchdown leader in franchise history.

The Bengals drafted Dalton in the second round back in 2011, and he has been their starting quarterback ever since. As a rookie, Dalton passed for 3,398 yards and 20 touchdowns and was named to his first Pro Bowl team.

Through nine seasons, Dalton appeared in three Pro Bowls and led his team to the playoffs five times. Even with losing 11 of his 13 starts this past season, Dalton’s record with the Bengals was 70-61-2.

When looking back at the history of the Bengals, it is fair to say that Dalton is one of the best quarterbacks they have ever had, as he holds plenty of franchise records.

Now Dalton hits the open market for the first time as a free agent. At 32 years old, he still has plenty left in the tank and will at least become one of the best backup quarterbacks in the league.

When it comes to earning a starting position for next season, there are not many clear landing spots for Dalton however.

Most teams have already found their answer at quarterback, either through free agency, trades or the draft. The one team that actually makes a lot of sense for Dalton is the New England Patriots.

The Patriots and the Jacksonville Jaguars are the two teams with reported interest in Dalton, but New England actually presents a better chance for him to start.

Jacksonville is clearly moving on with last year’s rookie sensation Gardner Minshew as their starting quarterback, as they traded Nick Foles and his expensive contract to the Chicago Bears this offseason. Minshew could use a backup though and Dalton would fit the bill.

On the other hand, the Patriots are currently looking at going into the season with journeyman Brian Hoyer and their fourth-round pick from last year, Jarrett Stidham.

After the Patriots chose to not draft a single quarterback last week, it appears that they believe Stidham is their future franchise quarterback.

Stidham fits the bill for the Patriots as their system is based around a quarterback who is accurate and makes good decisions with the ball. Across his last two years in college at Auburn, Stidham had 36 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

Still, there is no doubt that Dalton has the experience to be a valued piece of the Patriots quarterback room, whether starting or not.

He would likely push Stidham far more than Hoyer would, and could also serve as a better backup quarterback if the young QB ultimately earns the job. Now we just have to see if Bill Belichick pulls the trigger on acquiring the “Red Rifle”.

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Patrick Mahomes Signs Largest Contract in Sports History

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For the first time in the history of sports, an athlete has signed a contract worth half a billion dollars. That athlete is coming off the heels of winning his first Super Bowl MVP and hopes to have a long career of personal and team success ahead of him.

In his first two seasons playing in the NFL, Patrick Mahomes has won a league MVP and the Super Bowl. Now Mahomes has signed a 10-year contract extension worth $503 million.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter is reporting that the contract is a 10-year deal worth $45 million a year, which will pay Mahomes $450 million over that span. Assuming he stays healthy, Mahomes will be the quarterback of the Kansas City Chiefs through the 2031 season. If he does get hurt, there is still $140 million in injury guarantees.

Along with the $450 million, Mahomes has guarantee mechanisms in his contract (to account for the rising salary cap) that can take his contract up to $477 million. If those mechanisms aren’t met, Mahomes can opt out of the deal.

Finally, there are $25 million in incentives that Mahomes can reach, taking the total potential value of his new contract to $503 million.

At just 24 years old, Mahomes has quickly became regarded as the best quarterback in the NFL. He has now proven he can win and play well in the biggest moments, while producing gaudy statistics along the way.

There is truly no telling what the Chiefs will do over the next 12 years that they have Mahomes as the face of the franchise. It is clear though that they believe they have a dynasty on their hands and Mahomes will get paid handsomely through every minute of it.

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Patriots Dynasty Given New Life with Cam Newton Signing

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When Tom Brady signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the AFC East looked to be wide-open for the time in two decades. The New England Patriots were set to go into this season with unproven young quarterback Jarrett Stidham and journeyman Brian Hoyer.

Then over the weekend, Bill Belichick once again reminded everyone why the Patriots have been atop the sport for so long, as his patience paid off and they landed a former MVP quarterback to replace the one that left them in free agency.

Cam Newton is coming off an injury-plagued season that saw him play just two games, leading to his eventual release by the Carolina Panthers this offseason. Still, he signs with the Patriots on a one-year deal which comes at incredible value for New England.

Newton was the league MVP in 2015, when he led the Panthers to the Super Bowl after going 15-1 in the regular season. He has been one of the most elite dual-threat quarterbacks in the NFL since arriving to league as the first overall pick back in 2011.

Across the first eight seasons of his career, Newton averaged 3,500 passing yards, 23 passing touchdowns, 600 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns per season. Now due to the unprecedented circumstances of this offseason, he simply fell into New England’s laps.

The most money that Newton will make this season in $7.5 million if he hits all of his incentives. There also is not any provision in his contract that prohibits the Patriots from putting the franchise tag on him next year if Newton has a big year.

Essentially the Patriots landed, at worst, one of the best backup quarterbacks in the league on a minimum deal if he does not win the starting job. Assuming he is healthy, Newton is an affordable quarterback that can have a monster bounce-back year and lead the Patriots for the next few seasons.

Once again the New England Patriots have become the envy of all teams in the NFL. Only time will tell though if the dynasty truly can live one without Tom Brady.

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Andy Dalton Signs One-Year Deal with the Dallas Cowboys

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When the Cincinnati Bengals released Andy Dalton, everyone was wondering where the 32-year-old quarterback would sign now that he was a free agent.

The New England Patriots and the Jacksonville Jaguars were among some of the potential landing spots that were suspected to pique Dalton’s interest, but nobody had him signing with the Dallas Cowboys.

Yet that is exactly where Dalton will end up, as the Cowboys shocked everyone on Saturday night by signing him to a one-year deal worth up to $7 million.

You can imagine that playing for the Cowboys was always a dream for Dalton, as he was born and raised in Katy, Texas, which is located about three hours outside of Dallas.

Dalton went on to play college football at Texas Christian University and would set nearly all school quarterback records during his time with the Horned Frogs. Dalton was then drafted by the Bengals with the 35th overall pick back in 2011.

He has gone on to have a very good NFL career starting for the Bengals and will now look to compete with Dak Prescott in Dallas.

If all goes as planned for the Cowboys, Prescott won’t miss any time next season and Dalton won’t ever see the field. But by signing Dalton, the Cowboys have a great contingency plan in place.

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