Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton is one of the most polarizing players in the NFL.
Somehow, Dalton has basically become the Rorschach inkblot test of quarterbacks: If you think Dalton’s good, then you know nothing about NFL quarterbacks. If you think he’s bad, then you know nothing about NFL quarterbacks. If you think he’s exactly average, then you’re a quarterback guru.
Dalton is so polarizing that the guys over at NFL.com created the “Andy Dalton scale.”
Basically, if the quarterback on your team is better than Dalton, then you have franchise quarterback. On the other hand, if your team has a quarterback who’s worse than Dalton, then you need a new quarterback.
Based on that information, I have some horrible news for 23 teams out there: You need a new quarterback. At least, you need a new quarterback according to the latest ratings from Madden 17.
The full ratings for the game were released on Wednesday, and let’s just say that the programmers over at EA Sports think very highly of Dalton. The Bengals quarterback was given an 87 overall rating, which ranked above Tony Romo (86), Philip Rivers (84), Eli Manning (81) and Joe Flacco (81).
Clearly, Flacco’s not elite if he’s not even on the right side of the Dalton scale.
Dalton was the ninth-highest ranked quarterback in the game this year, which arguably makes sense because he’s coming off a career year. However, some people weren’t amused by Dalton’s ranking.
Madden 17 ratings:
Andy Dalton 87 OVR
Tony Romo 86 OVR
Matthew Staford 85 OVR
Philip Rivers 84 OVR
I’m currently laughing right now
— ⚡️Chargers Legion⚡️ (@ChargersLegion) August 3, 2016
On the other hand, some people thought Dalton should’ve been tied with Romo because they’re kind of the same person.
Dalton also ranked ahead of Matthew Stafford , Matt Ryan and Alex Smith .
If Madden had only counted the 1 p.m. games that Dalton played in last season, I’m guessing “Daytime Dalton” would’ve finished on top of the list, ahead of Aaron Rodgers (96), Tom Brady (94) and Cam Newton (94).
Can’t ever count Andy Dalton out of a 1 p.m. game. He’s NFL MVP four years in a row if Bengals only play 1 p.m. games.
— John Breech (@johnbreech) September 27, 2015
Let’s be honest, there’s no stopping “Afternoon Andy.”
Anyway, Dalton’s ranking wasn’t the only surprising thing to come out of this year’s Madden ratings.
Four other interesting QB nuggets from the Madden 17 ratings
1. Jared Goff is only slightly better than Carson Wentz .
Not only were these two separated by one spot in the NFL Draft, but they’re also separated by one spot in the ratings for Madden 17. Goff checks in with a rating of 77, while Wentz was given a rating of 76. It seems that the Los Angeles Rams made the right choice, or they made their choice by asking someone at EA Sports what they should do. Both things are believable.
2. The Denver Broncos should switch to a single-wing offense.
If Madden ratings are any indication, the Broncos offense could actually end up being worse than it was last year. The current quarterback battle in Denver is going on between three players who all have a Madden rating below 75.
Rookie quarterback Paxton Lynch leads the way with a rating of 74. Mark Sanchez has a rating of 72 and Trevor Siemian sits near the bottom of the rankings with a QB rating of 60. Basically, I think the people at EA Sports are trying to say that the Broncos should think about running the ball on every play in 2016.
3. The Dallas Cowboys have a backup QB problem.
The Cowboys have zero talent behind Tony Romo, at least according to the Madden ratings. Not only does Dak Prescott have a rating of 71, but things are actually worse: No. 3 quarterback Jameill Showers has the lowest quarterback rating in the game (56).
4. The San Francisco 49ers QB battle is going to end in a tie.
Picking a starting quarterback for the 49ers isn’t going to be easy this year because Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert are basically the same person, at least according to Madden. Both players were given a rating of 74. Madden gives a slight edge to Kaepernick in the quarterback competition because he has a better speed, agility and accuracy rating than Gabbert.