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Hue Jackson: Andy Dalton must be better for Bengals

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton ranks just behind Peyton Manning and Dan Marino with 80 touchdown passes in his first three seasons.

He's also one of just a handful of quarterbacks in NFL history to lead his team to the playoffs in each of first three seasons.

The problem is that those three postseason games rank among the worst performances in his 51 career starts.

New offensive coordinator Hue Jackson acknowledged Wednesday that Dalton must play better on the NFL's biggest stage.

"Obviously that's the hump that we're trying to get over," Jackson told SiriusXM NFL Radio. "And I think the guy has the makeup to do it."

The core of Dalton's problem is that he has regressed at times in decision-making, field vision and pocket presence. Jackson plans to tear his mechanics down and build them up again this offseason.

"Just go back to the fundamentals that you use playing the game," Jackson explained, "from how you get under center, how you take a snap, the sense of urgency in your drop, where we're putting our eyes, how we're finishing our throws, our progress.

"And I think Andy's gonna learn that there's a time in the National Football League when you gotta say 'uncle' and just throw the ball away."

If Dalton wants to get paid, he better be "on the cusp of something really good," as Jackson expects.

The Bengals are conflicted about a lucrative long-term extension because there's no market for purgatory quarterbacks.

The best field generals get paid like the face of the franchise. Average quarterbacks find themselves making way for a young, cheaper option.

Until Jackon's work pays tangible dividends, the Bengals are stuck in the middle with Dalton.

In the latest edition of the "Around The League Podcast", the guys discuss "Draft Day," then break down who got better (and who got worse) in the AFC East.

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