The Cincinnati Bengals recently cut quarterback Andy Dalton. While the move wasn’t surprising after they drafted LSU standout Joe Burrow with the number one overall pick, it did mark the end of an era. For the better part of a decade, Dalton has been under center for the Bengals. It didn’t take him long to find a job, however, as the Dallas Cowboys scooped him up quickly.
So what type of contract did Dalton receive, how did it compare to what he made in Cincy, and what is his net worth?
Andy Dalton’s new contract with the Dallas Cowboys
The NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported Dalton’s contract is a one-year deal worth $3 million with up to $7 million in incentives for the quarterback. It makes sense for Dalton: he played collegiately at TCU, so this is a homecoming of sorts.
The move is an absolute no-brainer for the Cowboys — Dalton easily represents the best backup they’ve had in quite some time and $7 million is a steal based on how quarterbacks are currently paid in the NFL. The move is also a bit of a head-scratcher for the team in one respect.
The Cowboys have been locked in a battle over a long term deal with incumbent quarterback Dak Prescott for well over a year now. They applied the franchise tag to Prescott this offseason, ensuring he won’t leave.
Dallas refuses to award him an extension that Prescott believes he is worth. Is it possible that the team is looking at Dalton as an insurance policy in case Prescott leaves next offseason?
Career salary overview
The Bengals selected Andy Dalton with the 35th overall pick in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft. According to Spotrac, his first salary was for four years and $5.2 million.
The team signed him to a hefty extension in the summer of 2014 to the tune of six years, $96 million. The deal guaranteed him over $17 million. Dalton never won a playoff game in stripes, but he did bring stability to a franchise that had been a laughingstock before his arrival.
Had the Bengals not released Dalton, he would have made $17.5 million next season. Based on the fact that they clearly favored Burrow and the team has struggled in recent years with Dalton under center, the move was predictable.
What is Andy Dalton’s net worth?
The website CelebrityNetWorth.com estimates Dalton’s net worth at around $35 million. Dalton’s 2014 deal got him on Forbes’ 2015 list of highest-paid athletes at number 57. Dalton also received a reported $1 million per year from his sponsors including Nike, Pepsi, and FantasyDraft.
Dalton may have a chance to add to that net worth significantly in 2021. While his salary this season is a fraction of what he made as a starter in Cincinnati, the NFL is a quarterback-starved league.
If Dalton gets into any games in 2020 and shows he can still perform capably, he’ll certainly get an opportunity to compete for another job when he hits free agency. Whether he’s competing in Dallas or elsewhere will largely depend on how Prescott’s contract negotiations go next offseason.
Yes, Dalton is only under a one-year deal. And yes, he’d likely only be a stopgap between Prescott and the next quarterback the team drafts. But the bottom line is that Dalton is a massive upgrade over the rest of the league’s backups and likely could have been a starter somewhere this season.
If Dallas opts not to franchise Prescott next offseason but still won’t give him an extension, they could find themselves with Dalton as their new starting QB.