Andy Dalton said Thursday he signed with the Chicago Bears with the expectation he would be the starting quarterback for the 2021 season.
Dalton signed a one-year deal with the Bears as the team moved on from its former No. 2 pick Mitchell Trubisky. Chicago went back-and-forth between Trubisky and Nick Foles last season.
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“They told me I was the starter. That was one of the reasons why I wanted to come here. So every conversation I’ve had has been that, so that’s the assurance that I’ve gotten,” he told reporters during his introductory press conference, via The Chicago Tribune.
He added that his relationship with Bears offensive coordinator Bill Lazor was what helped make the move a no-brainer.
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“At this point in my career, you want to join a team that is competitive, that is doing things the right way, is turning in the right direction,” he added. “And to get a chance to come in and start for a team like this, that’s a great opportunity for me and for my future and my career and everything. So whenever this whole thing was working out, I was excited about this opportunity. I’m looking forward to what’s to come.”
Dalton signed with the Dallas Cowboys in 2020 with the anticipation he would backup Dak Prescott for the year. Then, Prescott suffered a season-ending injury and Dalton was mostly used as a starter when he was healthy.
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The three-time Pro Bowler played in 11 games in 2020, recording 2,170 passing yards and 14 touchdowns. He spent nine years with the Cincinnati Bengals before playing in Dallas.