Bengals' Andy Dalton: We can't worry about the past


Andy Dalton is the starting quarterback for a Cincinnati Bengals team that enters December at 9-2. He is on pace to establish career highs in touchdowns, yards per attempt, completion percentage and passer rating. He might not be the favorite in a discussion for league MVP, but he certainly belongs in the conversation.

And yet, all that success will continue to be met with doubts about what will happen when the games count. Dalton is winless in four playoff games, and asking him about those January failures has become a stock question in just about any interview Dalton takes part in.

Case in point: Tuesday on NFL Network's NFL HQ, where Dalton was asked about his exciting partnership with Old Spice, the importance of Jeremy Hill, Tyler Eifert's neck and -- of course -- his sordid postseason resume.

"We can't worry about what's happened in the past. We can't go back and play those games," Dalton said, falling back on a sentiment rolled out dozens of times this season. "Our whole focus is what we're doing this year. We're still not in the playoffs yet, so we can't worry about that. We just got to be playing our best football come the end of the year."

In a weird way, Dalton would almost be better off with the Bengals missing out on a bye, which would guarantee a home wild-card game against -- with all due respect to the Texans, Chiefs and Jets of the world -- an inferior opponent.

One playoff win won't be enough to make this Bengals season a smashing success, but it will do wonders for Dalton's legacy.