Andy Dalton is celebrating his 32nd birthday today, and the Cincinnati Bengals have decided that’s a perfect time to inform their long time quarterback that he has been benched in favor of their fourth-round rookie, Ryan Finley.
According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, Finley will start for the winless Bengals when they return to the field in Week 10 following their bye week.
Dalton, who is under contract with the Bengals for one more season, has thrown for 2,252 yards, nine touchdowns and eight interceptions so far this season. The NFL’s trade deadline is rapidly approaching at 4pm ET on Tuesday, and it does not appear that the team has any plans to trade him before then.
Cincinnati drafted Dalton out of TCU in the second round of the 2011 draft and he has spent his entire career with the organization. During his first eight seasons, Dalton earned Pro Bowl honors three times and led the Bengals to the playoffs in four of those years. However, he was 0-4 as a starter in playoffs with one touchdown and six interceptions.
The Bengals (0-8) will host the division rival Baltimore Ravens (5-2) when they return to the field in Week 10. Check out some of the reactions to Dalton’s birthday benching in the tweets embedded below.