The Bengals released quarterback Andy Dalton on Thursday in a move that came after the team made an effort to exchange their longtime starter.
The Bears were thought to be a potential landing point, but they instead dealt for Nick Foles and Dalton had no other trading options as the teams knew the Bengals would take Joe Burrow with the top overall pick.
“There were several different factors,” said Dalton, via the team’s website. “This year, a good amount of shifts were available. I think it would have worked differently if I had been a free agent when the new championship year started. I was still in touch and it hurt me. I’m sure the teams knew they were going to take a No. 1 quarterback and they would free me and that there was no reason to rush. “
Dalton said he was willing to talk about staying in Cincinnati, but needed to “know somehow” what the plans were now that Burrow was officially on the team. The plans did not involve retaining Dalton and his $ 17.5 million salary, so he is now a free agent ready to check any options that may be available while remaining sure that everything will “work” in the end.